The world is changing by the day, and leadership is no exception. Advancements in technology, social responsibility, globalization, and politics mean that situations are fluid and leadership must adapt. Aside from building character, change presents new opportunities while marking your journey’s milestones. Every leader’s challenge is understanding why, when, and how the disruption will occur so they can prepare their team. So, how can you be a successful leader in a changing world?
An organization’s digital shift starts with its leaders. There are many reasons why leaders need digital skills. For starters, they improve judgment, allowing leaders to approach situations holistically. Leaders can also inspire their teams’ innovation. Again, digital capacity facilitates standardization and automation, enabling leaders to implement changes that involve and incorporate the input of team members.
So, what abilities do leaders need? The first one is communication. Over the years, leaders and managers may have remained distant from their team. However, this trend is disastrous for companies in the digital era. For example, you can introduce systems that promote communication within the organization. By making yourself approachable, these programs boost your worker’s morale and productivity. The communication extends to your clients. On top of stellar customer service, advertise your brand using social media.
To promote talent and accelerate decision making, businesses are abolishing conventional hierarchies. Workers often don’t have to report to managers, likewise with managers to division heads. Instead of using seniority to assign duties, share your goals with your workers, and let them define their roles within reason. This improves their abilities while contributing to the company’s success.
You can also hire externally. Apart from providing new ideas, external candidates could have more experience than your current workers. Their fresh perspectives also come in handy during situations demanding innovation and culture shifts. Moreover, eliminating administrative layers encourages remote work. This broadens your talent pool since individuals can choose their work hours. What’s more, you save on rent, office furniture, and employee insurance.
Grab every opportunity to advance your company’s vision, no matter how risky it is. Do you want to launch a new product? Or are you looking to expand your services? Aside from encouraging innovation, risks give you an upper hand over your competitors. However, don’t take risks blindly. Start by outlining your goals and evaluating your decision’s pros and cons. Secondly, uncover potential obstacles and take time to solve them.
This goes hand in hand with weighing your resources against the action’s cost. If you’re confident enough, take the first step, watching out for setbacks, and how you can fix them. Remember, success isn’t guaranteed regardless of how much you plan. If you fail, forgive yourself and learn from the incident. Share your experiences, both successful and not as a leader to also inspire your team.
Empathy involves fitting in another person’s situation to understand their perspective. According to DDI, empathy tops the list of essential leadership skills. It shows you why your workers are struggling and how to improve their performance. Employees are likely to work harder if they feel valued. Furthermore, it helps motivate them to care about their colleagues, creating a healthier working environment. Outside the organization, empathy helps you market products by understanding your customer’s needs.
So, how do you demonstrate empathy? To begin with, ask questions and note responses. Likewise, connect with your team outside work to know their struggles. You can invite them for lunch or go for team building retreats. Most importantly, reduce virtual interactions and meet in person. This way, you read their body language and listen to the tone of their voice.
Being a successful leader in a changing world isn’t easy or straightforward. The first step of handling difficulties is accepting you don’t know everything. By so doing, you empower your team and encourage collaboration. Keep these tips in mind for improving your leadership and in critical times such as when you want to have success in entering a new market.
Looking for help? Tired and believing there has got to be a better way?
Let's talk about your business. With over a decade of experience leading companies and transforming lives, and a Master's degree in Org. Development and Leadership, Mike can help you find the best way forward!