Leader of the future is digital, wide-ranged and servile, and is moulded through the culture, work and challenges that s/he works with.
The present-day business context is unique. Technology is leading to new business models emerging and a rapid reduction in space and time effort of doing things. The skills of today most certainly will not be relevant in a few years. The only two things that will matter are ability to learn at pace and the constant pursuit of learning. Leaders who will transition into this new age business environment with the right abilities and tools will create unprecedented opportunities and value for themselves and their teams.
A new age leader is digitally obsessed. Technology is the ultimate unlock for infinite scalability. Many a times, as humans, we commit ourselves to repeat mundane procedural overheads, which add drudgery to our lives, limits our productivity and derails us from the path of infinity. Technology obsession is not just confined to the technology leaders, but a principle that each business leader has to imbibe deeply. It does not entail being a technology geek and knowing the greatest and latest tools always. Instead, it is about a fundamental appreciation of creating more efficiency and removing drudgery. It is about making lives better and easier through simple and elegant technology or better process design. It is a mindset that entails having an innate urge to simplify problems and scale solutions using automation and technology. A strong “digital” leader has the following markers:
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Second, a new age leader has a wide range. The range goes beyond roles, hierarchies, geographies and functions. It requires one to operate at the depth of the front line and width of the global business head at the same time. The change is rapid and tumultuous, and a new age leader has to be at the frontier of action so he or she can foresee change and benefit from it. One needs to be capable of executing a transaction and setting a strategic vision both for high quality leadership in a new era. It is important for business leaders to spend adequate time not just shadowing frontline but also doing their activities. Operations leaders should run the floor for 30 days in a year. Sales leaders should close transactions themselves. Technology leaders should not forget to code. The markers of a leader with “range” are:
Finally, a new age leader needs to bring a “serving” mindset and not a dominating mindset. It is the only path for legitimate leadership and greatness. Leadership is not authority. Leadership is not asking people or ordering people around. True meaning of leadership is serving. Through service one gains insight, listening skills, collaboration, empathy, inspiration, persuasion and the ability to truly care for people. If one truly and humbly cares for people, greatness is certain. If one follows authority to get things done or position to pursue outcomes, then lowness is certain, as one would not develop any skills to lead or grow or ideate or envision. The markers of great “servant leaders” are as follows:
Leader of the future is digital, wide-ranged and servile. The culture, work and challenges that one works with finally mould him/her into a new-age leader. At Rivigo, our focus is on building a gymnasium to build the leadership muscle of the young exceptional folks who have joined us.
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