21st Century Leadership: How do you keep up?

21st Century Leadership, are you keeping up?

What do we mean by 21st Century Leadership?

When we were thinking about creating a leadership course for the Tricres learning platform, we considered a range of options.  None seemed to fit the bill because there was always something missing.

Then inspiration struck!  In the 21st Century, leadership isn’t just about leading teams of people.  It’s not just about leading a business to success. And neither is it just about leading your own mind and emotions in order to be successful.

It’s about combining all three elements.

Our  model balances the following elements that every leader in today’s world needs to master in order to succeed;

  1. Leading yourself – managing your own thoughts, feelings and actions
  2. Leading others – building successful, high performing teams as well as nurturing individual talent
  3. Leading the business – the business is an entity in its own right and requires careful leadership

Finally, COMMUNICATION links all three elements together.  Without effective and efficient communication, nothing works at all.

We’ve created the Leadership Diamond to simplify this for you.

As with all models, it looks devilishly simple on paper, but the delivery of this is pretty tricky to get right.

Leading organisations in the 21st Century is very much like sailing a large, complicated yacht – you need to make a series of micro-adjustments constantly to stay on course and every now and again, you need to change tack completely and do a full 360-degree turn to avoid a severe storm.

How can leaders today achieve such a fine balance?

With all the demands placed on leaders in the 21st Century such as;

  1. Rapidly moving technology
  2. Five generations in the workplace
  3. Changing expectations of the new generations coming into the workplace
  4. The fact that planning any further than three years ahead is probably a waste of time
  5. Disruptors changing well-established industries almost overnight

The list goes on……

Should you just bury your head in the sand as a leader?  Can you keep up?

We believe the key to successful leadership in the 21st Century is self-development, self-awareness and constant vigilance for new tech and new ways of doing things.  You can no longer hide in a bunker and hope that things will just go away.  You can longer standstill.  If you’re not developing your thinking, your knowledge of the wider world and taking note of global perspectives, then you will be left behind.

Now, not every business leader wants to grow their business and that’s ok.  Having a lifestyle business is certainly not a crime and is actually a really great way to have a balanced life, but even a lifestyle business has to move forward and grow in order to survive, even if it’s in a small way.

Any business that is on a growth pathway, absolutely must invest in coaching, training, and development and make itself aware of how technology can improve its systems, offering and profits.  Every business in the 21st Century will be a tech business of one kind or another.  They may not base their model on tech, but they’ll need to adopt some kind of tech in order to thrive, even if it’s just using tax digital compliant software (yes, there are still companies out there who use paper books for their accounts!)

Nurturing individual talent and team success is an entire blog all on its own as is managing your own thoughts, feelings and actions.  We’ll be looking at these other two areas of 21st Century Leadership over the next couple of weeks.