Shareholders, employees and customers want steadfast, self-confident captains who are able to steer their company ship through difficult markets and stay on top of every critical situation. On the other side, there is the manager as a person who is challenged to deal with his own insecurities. “Insecurity is an element in all things human. If man sought to free himself from all insecurity he would have to stop being a thinking being” (Benjamin Constant).

When pursuing change, one will often enter new territory. It is uncertain whether everything will work out exactly as intended. Whether interventions will be effective, how the environment will react, what resistance there will be, etc.

To demand of oneself to be the omniscient and unwavering strong leader is a very high demand and a burden. It is difficult to persevere, and also not authentic or credible. Even managers can admit their uncertainty and get advice from others.

Uncertainty is a gift that makes the attentive change manager aware of possible imponderables and dangers, and often makes him involve others. This is why you shouldn’t be afraid or try to hide your uncertainty.


  1. Get your feet on the ground by formulating several specific scenarios and then working out a specific road map of next steps for every single scenario.
  2. Don’t hide your uncertainty. Admit that you don’t have a solution at the moment, but promise that you will give it all your attention and energy.
  3. Chase off the ‘ghost’ that makes you uncertain by explicitly describing the worst that could happen.
  4. Select an external coach you trust. Agree on a coaching process that allows you to reflect on specific situations in a protected space to better understand the source of your personal uncertainty.