Exploring the Leadership Skills of the Future.
Our world is experiencing what many refer to as the Fourth Industrial
Revolution, an era that is completely transforming how we work. More
specifically, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Robotics and
other innovative technologies are changing how we operate and providing
added flexibility and efficiency. As a consequence, we have experienced a
dramatic shift in the overall profile of the workforce. As technology continues
to influence industries, our workplace will inevitably progress and change.
Our future work is heavily dependent on new technology. Business leaders
need to deliver the necessary skills to support their organisation in maintaining its competitiveness and taking control of up skilling and
implementing the mentoring support and development for their teams.
Technology has a direct impact on our workforce. According to “Robots and
Jobs: Evidence from the U.S. Labor Markets”, every robot integrated per
1,000 workers generates a 0.2% decline in the overall employment-to-
population ratio, equating to a total loss of approximately 400,000 jobs.
The World Economic Forum anticipates that technology innovation in the
workplace will eliminate nearly 85 million jobs worldwide by 2025. While this
may be a worrying figure, the rise in technology will reportedly generate 97
million jobs with different skill sets to meet the rising technology demand in
Finding suitable candidates to fill these positions will be challenging as the
overall demand generally exceeds supply levels. Levels of productivity haven’t
maintained pace with the growth and development of technological
innovation. Eventually, workplaces will catch up as employees become more
familiar with adopting new technologies.
Business leaders will then shift their focus closer towards results,
accountability and flexibility, rather than where and how their team can get
the work done. Many job roles will require changes, but this requires time, and
often people will be uncertain of new technologies.
Business leaders will need to circumnavigate through this transition. With
more manual tasks managed by technology, employers will see a rising
demand for candidates with strong technical skills within various areas such
as artificial intelligence, machine learning, data science, analytics and cloud
computing. People will turn their attention towards value-added
responsibilities, strategic decision-making and problem-solving. Critical
thinking skills are a necessity for employees and their leaders.
Technology is advancing rapidly, and businesses are continuing to integrate
the latest and the most innovative systems to remain competitive. Achieving
this requires a certain quality of leadership that is agile and capable of
enabling this evolutionary path. Larger teams aren’t necessarily as flexible and
agile as a network of smaller groups capable of moving between new projects
As a business develops and its resources change, a growth mindset will ensure
leaders remain strategic and driven while following the latest innovations and
industry trends. Companies need to adapt before their competitors do and
have leaders that act as advocates so that their teams can achieve their goals.
Business leaders today need to provide their team with the necessary
resources and guidance. Understanding individual strengths and weaknesses
and providing training to deliver the right skill sets is critical.
In a tech-dominant world, strong communication skills are critical. Employees
need constant feedback so they can shift their goals and move to more
appropriate projects. Regular communications improve transparency, a vital
asset to developing a team and progressing as a business.
Aside from providing clear direction and strategy, future leaders will adopt the
role of being an influencer, using their success to share valuable insights and
motivating other individuals in reaching their goals.
The need for collaboration
HR leaders, the heads of other industries and decision-makers in technology
may not have spent much time working together in the past. Their positions
and responsibilities are often being siloed and separated from other
disciplines. In the new working world, this is all changing. Senior leaders from
across a broad set of industries are being encouraged to collaborate and tackle
the challenges faced by a modern working environment. Failing to work
together will inevitably influence success rates in the workplace.
As we work our way into the post-pandemic workplace, the strategic
challenges and implementing the best measures for now and future will be a
Addressing the opportunities that exist within the workplace and utilising
greater collaboration between different teams and sectors will be vital to
developing the future workplace. The pandemic has accelerated the progress
of the workplace, and businesses worldwide continue to reassess their
priorities and adapt to a new normal. It has come with its challenges but has
also offered new opportunities. Those businesses that put people at the core of
their workplace strategy will likely be the ones that succeed in building a
workplace that empowers and retains a positive, productive and motivated