As we roll into the central month of spring we can look back at turbulent times so far this year. Many headlines have focused on natural disasters, riots and war, political conflict, and economic uncertainty. Many organizations, teams, and individuals continue to be challenged — and stimulated — by shifting customer priorities, rising numbers of e-mails, meetings, and urgencies, narrow “silo” or departmental thinking, and major setbacks or even failures.

Tomorrow we’ll publish the May issue of The Leader Letter. As with all issues of my monthly newsletter, this one puts all of April’s blogs into one document. The May issue pulls together last month’s blogs on the key leadership responses needed during these topsy-turvy times. We’ll start with a look at the key F-word that defines whether we’re a leader, follower, or wallower (my last blog). How we deal with “failure” (and even define it) is critical to our personal, team, or organization success. University of Michigan professor, Jeff Liker, provides timely and valuable advice based on his new book showing on how Toyota turned their crisis into opportunity.

The May issue reviews how lasting organizational change balances doing and being through “involved leadership.” This calls for strong management teams that effectively pull together and take time to work on their team focus and effectiveness. As customer perceptions and needs change, we need a broader and more integrated customer focus to continuously improve service/quality levels. This outward looking approach needs to move deep into the organization to counteract the inward tendencies of “tyrannical” teams and departments to protect their turf.

Ellen Langer’s research on powerful mind-body connections (reviewed in my blog post on her book Counterclockwise) shows how our perceptions and expectations shape the reality of our world. If you haven’t read each of April’s blog posts as they appeared, may the May issue help you spring back from setbacks or adversity and (re) shape your personal, team, or organizational reality!