Not empowering digital leadership is a business suicide
Business growth and organizational survival depend on innovation. The main brake of organizational innovation are its managers. The priority of our companies is to ensure that our managers create innovative environments and cultures with spaces where collective intelligence creates new business solutions. Innovative leaders are urgently needed.
But the digital revolution and new ways of managing talent are being too fast for managers and key professionals of our organizations and many of them are not prepared for this challenge.
For most companies it is a basic need to create a strategy that supports these professionals through development programs, so they can act as drivers of this change. The main business priority is to find the next generation of leaders and prepare them for the new challenges.
Managers socialized before the era of digital innovation
The glory of the past is becoming a worse predictor of the future. A third of the most powerful companies in the world that in 1970 were among the Fortune 500, were no longer in 1983, and currently of the first 50 only 13 resist. But all agree that these changes in the rankings have accelerated and the rates of change in these lists will be higher in the future. Companies and their success are increasingly unstable, because the rate of innovation is higher.
Our local crisis and the global digital revolution have helped to accelerate this rate of change and leaders must move quickly in the new environment or they will be an obstacle for their companies. They become an antithesis of what a leader should be, the one that drives change, at the pace that its market makes.
Current managers, baby boomers (born in the early 60s or earlier), have been prepared and socialized in management systems in which the change and complexity were minor. They have been promoted to lead companies where the nature of the business ecosystem was different and many of them have not been able to change at the pace demanded by the new times: they are not leaders for new environments.
If the organizations do not advance faster because the leaders who should promote change can not assume it, sometimes, shouting, these organizations are doomed to decay.
Leader’s life is shortening
In the past we spent a third of our lives learning and developing, another third working (and apparently unraveling our surroundings) until someone detected that we had been left out and spent the last third of our life outside of a working environment too hard for admit those who stayed behind.
But this intermediate process “of useful life” is shortening, while the working life is extended. And this process – which until now had respected more the directive cadres where the “gray hair” was a requirement of the position – is beginning to be seriously put in doubt.
The emergence of new leadership that involves managing talent differently for an innovative environment has been too disruptive. The new management systems based on social technologies, the new values associated with innovation, changes in decision systems and in the way of understanding the company and the role of the worker have been too deep and fast.
For many companies, the only devastating solution will be to replace current managers with new managers from other generations, with the capacity and initiatives to lead with new, more decentralized mechanisms, perhaps they will have less experience, but they will not be barriers to change. The truth is that this is an old and modern solution, which companies often use, although we prefer not to know, hide or ignore it.
Not acting on empowering leadership is a business suicide
For companies it is urgent to select and / or develop this new generation of leaders, so that they can create these new innovative cultures. New organizations without new leaders are not possible, nor are they without a new type of more responsible, autonomous, more professionalized collaborators with new values.
The 21st century management revolution based on digitalization is the revolution of collective intelligence. The new challenge of talent management will be to create the conditions for innovation or create an innovative culture.
The battle of innovation is, in reality, a war to better manage talent AND the most urgent and necessary talent to develop is managerial talent, transformative leadership. Losing the battle of innovation is the sure business death, trying to position itself as an innovative company is the only option that offers possibilities of success.
Not acting is a irresponsibility whose cost will be the highest that an organization can pay: its survival.