Business world was slowly shifting towards adopting digitization much before the pandemic. But then shift rate accelerated aftermath like everything else. Businesses these days are required to adapt, adopt, respond and strategize to changes at the earliest. It also includes leadership development and Data-Driven Decision Making strategies. It is rather an industry in itself with a projected global growth of $15.78 billion by 2025.
Modern Leadership Development
Leadership development traditional emphasizes on positional power. Experience levels and titles dominate the same, thus resulting in ‘leadership development paradox’. Highest performers derive maximum training especially during the last stage of their career. Such senior professionals are stated to be those requiring the least. Rather, workers requiring maximum development are left out, hence, the paradox. Contemporary leadership development has been leaving behind the corporate ladder by opting, inclusive, strategic model to reach across enterprise. Modern workforce is dispersed and diverse than before. It is more in environments considering remote work to be a prominent model.
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Top leadership qualities in the current business world
Today’s ‘new normal’ is more about companies avoiding traditional bureaucratic and authoritarian leadership style. They manage to thrive and ensure Succession Planning. Future and current leaders need to exhibit several critical leadership qualities.
1. Emotional intelligence:
A successful leader is one who is not only self-aware, but also navigates their emotions properly. They communicate and collaborate effectively, empathize and cope up with challenges and stress of their own as well as of others. Inclusion, understanding and compassion are vital. Such qualities allow them to instill positive corporate culture, thereby promoting connection as well as aligning with others’ values.
This ability underpins other vital capabilities. It includes innovation, adaptability and resiliency. Leaders can adapt effectively and quickly with evolving changes. They identify, respond quickly and thrive well some conditions like social issues, economic shifts, industry disruptors and new marketplace trends. They adapt easily to Digital Transformation.
People seek trustworthy leaders. Traditionally, it has been tough to trust bureaucratic leadership as everything occurred behind closed doors. Besides several layers of bureaucracy, there is plenty of red tape. Thus, majority of the employees were not aware of what was happening with the company. Hence, this model has very few takers. Rather, professionals seek employers transparent in their strategies and communications. Such leaders are calm, consistent in their communication and adapt quickly to Succession Planning. Transparent leaders have some level of vulnerability that they feel comfortable with. It inspires greater trust among their employees.
4. Future and current leaders need to keep several priorities in mind. They are to align with today’s workforce expectations. DEI, sustainability and Digital Transformation combined with purpose, corporate vision and economic trends are high-priority issues that leaders need to address.
Leadership development training
Many wonder how future leaders can nurture such qualities and contribute significantly to business success. Traditional training is rare and sporadic. It is also theoretical and knowledge-based. Besides being inconsistent, this model does not inculcate practical leadership behaviour. This is the reason for the growth of bureaucratic leadership style. Future leadership development training rather depends on Data-Driven Decision Making, actionable, strategic programs reaching across organization. Group-based learning might help future leaders to be on same page in some cases. Leaders in this model can share ideas, challenges and collaborate while they grow. It might appear like some individual mentorship programs emphasizing on nurturing and modeling key leadership qualities.
Whatever be the approach taken, Modern Leadership Development should involve continuous learning. It is essential to ensure successful leadership development. Future leaders should apply things they have learnt and seize opportunities wherever and whenever possible. It also includes brainstorming new ideas and creating space to allow employees to voice questions comfortably.