The year is 2022. In the past decade the world has suffered from a Global Pandemic that drastically changed work cultures as work from home was implemented internationally, in the first quarter of 2020; emonomies have crashed and revived, politics and social incidents have made history altering headlines and the Earth has faced multiple major calamities.
Now, whether we would like to admit it or not, most systems globally operate on a domino effect pattern. Meaning, the slightest of the changes in one part of the world has the potential to significantly impact business activities of a company at the other end of the world. The footballer Cristiano Ronaldo cost the food & beverage brand, Coca Cola, an estimate of $4 Billion by merely choosing to have water over a carbonated drink in front of the media.
As rightly put by the scientist, Albert Einstein “Everything is connected”. Therefore, leaders of an organisation, too, must alter their leadership styles and methodology of leading, to help the organisation surpass its hurdles and remain profitable, at the same time cater to the requirements of their superiors and subordinates. Gone are days when all that was expected of a leader was to keep the workers in line and yield optimum results from the workers’ efforts for businesses. Environment, culture, digitalisation are some factors among others that have caused leaders to consider alternative leadership methods that are in the best interest of all associated with them.
Here are 5 characteristics that a leader must harbour in order to lead successfully in 2022:
Connect with multiple generations
Over the years, the workspace has become a mixture of cultures. Workers from different nationalities, varying age groups and demographics are working together in the space that we now refer to as a global village. Therefore, it has become increasingly important for leaders to adapt to these changing multicultural work environments, and be welcoming and understanding towards cultures unknown to them. This effort would lead to instilling a sense of inclusion at the workplace that creates a safe and healthy environment for employees to perform at.
During the pandemic, employees from thousands of organisations were asked to work from home. This made it challenging for leaders to have easy access to their staff members and to coordinate. However, video conferencing and digital reports at the end of the day, became an increasingly popular trend. Many organisations adopted automations that helped leaders acquire information about the employees’ tasks for the day. On the other hand, there have been incidents when organisations made it mandatory for employees to keep their web-cameras on through the working hours which raised numerous privacy concerns. Therefore, a modern-day leader must know the extent of their supervision and intrusion into the personal lives of the employees, at the same time, a good leader must be able to think in favour of the firm and propose ideas that may help gather data about the employees’ working hours and record of the tasks completed by them as per the key performance indicator.
Sensitive towards Environmental Issues
The Earth is at 0 hour. Meaning that severe damage has been caused to the environment, dominantly due to human activities such as global warming, pollution and depletion of natural resources. Now, it is the duty of every individual and organisation to play their part in helping the environment revive and recover from the damage caused. A passion to contribute towards recovery of the environment is what sets a successful and visionary leader apart from the rest. The fact that renowned multinational organisations from Apple to Ikea to Unilever have recently altered their regular course of business to cut back on pollution and resource wastage, and the fact that world leaders are increasingly participating in global talks and summits the likes of UN led Earth Summit and the Climate Change Conference are a fact that concerns regarding the environment and the drive to steer the business towards an environment friendly direction is the mark of a great leader.
Empathy & Sympathy
As society advances, it is becoming clearer that no two people are the same. Meaning the way they work and their strengths differ. Additionally, mental health issues have started to draw public attention. Cultures are finally starting to accept and understand mental health and its adverse effects on a person’s life and day-to-day activities. It then becomes the responsibility of a great leader to observe the weaknesses and strengths of its subordinates, and encourage them to apply their strengths towards achieving company goals.
Inspiring change and productivity
The mark of a 21st Century leader is: practice before preaching and leading by example. A good leader is not someone who delegates tasks, asks for updates and assures that company targets are met by employees. A good leader analyses the hurdles and proposes innovative solutions, s/he maintains a healthy rapport with the subordinates and inspires them to give their best. A leader in 2022 serves as an example of a model employee. A leader is no more a stand-alone figure. To lead, one must learn to collaborate and work in harmony along with the team as a singular unit.
Not only are these leadership qualities important for business leaders but for those who are leaders outside the business sphere, from activists to politicians to sports team captains. Management courses offered by DeMont Institute of Management and Technology are designed to update the leadership skill set for managers, team leads and specialists to perform as a modern-day leader.