Start with WHY. There are many effective ways to frame the WHY of coaching. Leaders of tomorrow will embrace new mindsets and excel at new skills. Coaching is one of those skills. The first step toward developing coaching skills is to work with a coach. Then, as my professor of mathematics would say, it follows that now is the time to choose your coach. Indeed, the underlying assumption is that you aspire to become a leader for the future.
Futurist Jacob Morgan presents the top skills and mindsets most relevant for future leaders in his new book The Future Leader. I learned about Morgan's work in Benjamin Laker's article This Is What Leadership Will Be In 2030, published in Forbes. I asked for permission to publish the article on my blog. Benjamin Laker is a University Professor of Leadership. You can follow him on Twitter or LinkedIn or check out his website.
This Is What Leadership Will Be In 2030
By Benjamin Laker
The business landscape is undoubtedly changing. While some aspects of leadership, such as setting a vision and executing on strategy, will remain, the future leader will need to possess a new arsenal of skills and mindsets to lead effectively. This is because our businesses will look and operate fundamentally differently in ten years, which means we need a new type of leader at the helm of these organizations.
When bestselling author and keynote speaker Jacob Morgan would speak at conferences around the world, he would frequently ask, “what should we be teaching leaders now to prepare for the future?” Unfortunately, there is not much research out there which explores this, so Jacob decided to tackle this with his new book, The Future Leader. He interviewed more than 140 top CEOs from around the world at companies like Audi, Mastercard, Unilever, Oracle, SAP, Best Buy, Verizon, and many others.
Jacob asked all of these CEOs a series of questions, including the top skills and mindsets they believe will be most relevant for future leaders over the next decade and beyond. From those interviews, Jacob put together what he calls, The Notable Nine, which is the top 4 mindsets and top 5 skills that future leaders must master.
The world is becoming increasingly connected, which means every company has the potential for worldwide employees and customers. The mentality of the Global Citizen means thinking globally and embracing diversity. Leaders need to understand and appreciate new cultures, actively seek diverse teams, lead employees with different backgrounds, and know-how to enter and succeed in new global markets.
The servant mindset goes against much of the old way of thinking that leaders stay at the top of the company. The mindset of the service means that you practice humility and that you serve four groups: your leaders if you have them, your customers, your team, and yourself.
Like chefs balance numerous ingredients to create masterful meals, leaders must balance the two most essential ingredients of any business: humanity and technology. That means embracing technology and using it to improve efficiency in the organization while also providing a sense of purpose and caring for human employees. One side can’t succeed without the other.
Future leaders need to be like explorers of old and embrace the unknown. They need to be open to new ideas, and change course as the world around them evolves. Just like explorers had to learn continually, leaders need to be super perpetual leaders and practice curiosity.
Great coaches motivate, inspire, and engage their teams while caring about each member as an individual. Likewise, future leaders need to appreciate employees as individuals as opposed to viewing everyone as just workers. The best coaches and leaders develop their people to be more successful than them.
Futurists make sure organizations aren’t surprised by what the future might bring. The world in which we live and work is continually changing and full of unknowns. Futurists consider multiple scenarios and think through new possibilities. They stay on top of trends and are connected to their networks. This was the #1 skill, according to the 140+ CEOs Jacob interviewed.
Teenagers seem to always be current on the latest technology, and future leaders must be the same way. They don’t need to be experts in the practical application, but they should embrace technology and know-how to best leverage it to serve their company. They need to be tech-savvy and digitally fluent.
Translators are master communicators. They listen to understand and do more than hear what people are saying. They use verbal and non-verbal communication to connect with people and know the best channels to use to cut through the noise and deliver their messages. Listening and communication are two timeless aspects of great leadership, yet they are also the two which are changing the most!
For decades, leaders have shied away from being emotional. But in the future, leaders need to be emotionally intelligent like Yoda and develop their empathy and self-awareness. Great communicators build connections and aren’t afraid to be vulnerable. Empathy understands the feelings and perspectives of others. Self-awareness is about understanding your strengths and weaknesses and helping others understand yours as well.
It does not have to be with me, we may not be a fit. But trust me on this, I urge you to consider working with a coach. Give it a try. Just do it.
Your next step is to interview a few coaches. When you speak with the right coach, you'll know. Most coaches offer free sample sessions or chemistry sessions. To schedule your free sample session with me, click here.
"What's your purpose?
Take a long hard look at who you are,
what you want to do with your life,
and how you convert it into something bigger than you."
- Jonathan Donner, VP of leadership development, Unilever.