Amity Institute Of Training & Development

Leadership in the Digital Era

In today’s increasingly digitized and interconnected world, boundaries are blurred, collaborations are more fluid and the pressure on businesses and organizations to be agile is immense. Digital transformation is affecting every aspect of business from how we communicate, do our work or lead our teams. Current times are forcing leaders to redefine what leadership is about. It’s time for organizations to think of new ways of connecting, collaborating and to embrace technology in every component of their business.

To develop leaders for the digital era a new set of knowledge, skills and abilities are needed. In this paper we will discuss the leadership competencies required and how organizations can foster future leaders.

Lead with digitization. Organizations need leaders who understand the impact digital technology can have on their business. Leaders should be able to foresee possibilities to incorporate and extract value from technology in work. They should pioneer digital transformation in all areas of business.

Adaptability is the acceptance that change is constant and changing our mind is quite natural and acceptable. Ability to adapt is critical in a complex changing environment. Leaders need to be quick learners and change their minds in the face of emerging information. At the organization level adaptability means being able to innovate and react to opportunities and challenges. Adaptability helps leaders respond to fluid environment and change course if technology and market environments evolve in unanticipated ways.

Visionary implies having a clear sense of long-term direction, even in the face of short-term uncertainty. Leaders must have clear vision for the future of their organization, setting course and moving in that direction even if there is ambiguity in execution. Vision becomes even more important during disruptions and when opportunities are emerging. Leaders need vision to motivate and inspire, whilst at the same time adapting rapidly to current, contextual business situations.

Engaged leaders listen, interact and communicate with internal and external stakeholders combined with a strong sense of interest and curiosity in emerging trends. Leaders in the digital era need to be always engaged, whether with customers, partners, suppliers or team members. They must breakdown silos and get people to work together to solve problems.

Fostering Digital Leadership In the digital era organizations need new breed of leaders and revamp their internal leadership programs to build new leaders that have interdisciplinary skills, with an understanding of different business functions, industries and technologies.

Identify critical leadership roles and assess readiness of their talent to embrace and pioneer digital transformation.

Rethink your competency framework to include emergent knowledge and skills to focus leadership development.

Develop digital accelerator leadership immersion programs to build both technical and leadership capabilities.

Cultivate a culture of experimentation to enable leaders to think like innovators, try new things and learn.

Conclusion Organizations need to focus on competencies that impact their digital performance. Digitally savvy leaders are more prepared to meet emerging business challenges. Organizations must fosterleaders for the future who have a technical mindset and imagination and vision of how technology can enable their organization’s competitive position.

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Written By: Mr. Rajesh Sharma

Sources

  • Gerald C. Kane & others, “How Digital Leadership Is(n’t) Different”, MIT Sloan Management Review Magazine, Spring 2019 Issue.
  • Adam Cornell & Others, Digital Era Leadership Global Leadership Forecast 2018, released by DDI, The Conference Board and EY.
  • Rainer Neubauer & Others, “Redefining Leadership for a Digital Era”, IMD, Global Centre for Digital Business Transformation and Meta Beratung.

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