In the book Focus: Use Different Ways of Seeing the World for Success and Influence, Drs. Higgins and Halvorson report that people tend to orient themselves based on promotion or prevention paradigms. These orientations impact everything we do. Those who are promotion-focused concern themselves with maximizing success. On the other hand, prevention focus is characterized by minimizing losses and other protectionist behaviors.
In the context of IT leadership, the choice of how to focus is more critical than ever.
Promotion focus behaviors lead towards ingenuity and innovation while prevention focus becomes paralyzing with hand-wringing about optics, including whether the consulting firm is viewed as an order taker or strategic partner, and a disproportionate focus on touting achievements and people pleasing.