Leaders of the Future - Are You One?Jun 16, 2020
The need for effective leadership is more critical than ever, given the continuing emergence of powerful macro forces, including increased globalization, groundbreaking technology changes, unprecedented workforce diversity and relentless competition. And then, add in a human and economic crisis like Covid -- that's a game changer we didn't see coming and we weren't prepared for. So how do you lead in a world that is continually shifting under your feet?
The leaders of the future need to focus on three things: they will be well-equipped, well-intentioned and deliberate.
Well-equipped means that you are constantly learning and developing your strengths, while working on overcoming your blind spots and limitations. Leaders are learners and so, you are committed to your personal development, investing in yourself as a leader. You are also investing in the development of your team, as individuals and as a group. And, you understand that the meaning of "team" is dynamic today, so you are equipping people with the knowledge and tools they need to thrive in a world that is ever more volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous.
What is your plan for learning and development? How are you working to build more agility, flexibility and resiliency into your own leadership and into your team?
Well-intentioned means that, as a leader, you have asked yourself the importance question: why do you want to be a leader? And you have reflected on your motivation, your intention and how this plays out in the way you lead yourself and others.
The answer comes down to two distinct choices. One reason is to enjoy the prestige and power that comes with leadership. This is the sense that you've worked hard for it, you've earned it, you're entitled to the respect of those you lead. And you have the right to expect that they will follow you, support you and perform to your standards.
The reason on the other end of the spectrum is that you feel compelled to lead to support other people and to help them become the best versions of themselves possible. To do this, you use the benefit of all your own learning and development -- and your experiences -- to lift people up, and selflessly share your knowledge, skills and abilities to help them improve. This motivation is what makes you well-intentioned, and well-positioned for the future challenges of leadership. What is your motivation to be a leader?
Deliberate leaders are those who are intentional, thoughtful, conscious leaders. They actually think about leadership and how they can be better role models for others. They rely on their personal power, rather than their position or title to influence others. They are respectful rather than dismissive of other points of view that are different from their own. They want to inspire the best in others, and they are proactive about that. They learn how to connect with others, and build relationships based on trust, encouragement and accountability. They are focused on building other leaders.
To what extent does this describe you? And what can you do to improve?
These are the most critical characteristics of future leaders. They are well-equipped, well-intentioned and deliberate. They do not even need to have people reporting to them to be leaders. They can -- and should -- exist at every level of the organization.
Leaders like these can help your organization become more agile, more flexible, more resilient and more responsive to the changing needs of your market, your customers and your community.
Over my 40+ years of progressive leadership experience, I've helped countless leaders grow and thrive in a variety of situations. More recently, I've invested extensively in my own personal development. I've had the privilege to work directly with global thought leaders in the areas of leadership excellence, high performance, personal success and transformation. And I've synthesized what I've learned and what I've experienced to help my clients adapt, adjust and perform above standard norms in this unprecedented set of challenges we face today. And I can help you with a proven process and the best tools to develop the mindset and habits of high-performing leaders of the future.
No one had "navigating the effects of a global pandemic" as part of their strategic plan for 2020, and yet, we've all had to learn to adapt, adjust and respond in new ways to the demands at hand. Some were better than others at this. We can help more people to be better equipped for those challenges that get thrown at us without warning in the future.
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