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How to Lead Massive Change: An Interview with Lockheed Martin CIO Sondra Barbour

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in The Next Level

Sondra Barbour is the chief information officer and senior vice president of enterprise business services at Lockheed Martin. She's a company veteran and change leader who has taken on increasingly responsible positions over the course of her career. I spoke with her recently about what she's learned along the way. Some of the highlights from our conversation include:
  • Leading Massive Change: When leading change, Barbour focuses on the connection between two key factors: communication and identifying the influencers. She notes that the influencers are "sometimes not the people you think" they would be. Once you find them, you have to establish two-way communication with them.
  • Get Comfortable with Mistakes: Leading change means you're going to make mistakes. Barbour says, “You can’t be right 100% of the time, and if you are then you are not taking enough risk.” When a mistake is made, call it out and let your team know what you're going to do to correct it.
  • Maintaining Your Sanity: Leading massive change can be stressful. Barbour has learned that it's important to take time for yourself in whatever ways work for you. She's not a disciple of work/life balance. Instead, she believes fun and fulfillment can and should be had in both arenas.
Barbour has a lot more to say about change leadership in our podcast on the Next Level blog.

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