Leadership for Digital Age

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Competing in the digital age requires leaders to hone their skills in digital literacy and adapt their approaches. As fast paced technology advancements escalate changes in expectations from customers, suppliers, and employees, it becomes critical to attune business management to changing trends.

There are five areas that leaders need to put more emphasis on.

  1. Digital vision

Technology adoption is a strategic undertaking. The approach to implement point solutions to tackle specific needs in an adhoc manner would not serve a business well.

Leaders need to have a coherent digital vision for the business. Consider each technology as a puzzle piece that needs to fit well with the other pieces to form the complete picture. For operations, for instance, new technologies need to integrate well with existing tools and applications in order to provide process continuity.

A digital vision helps to chart a holistic technology roadmap that reflects the priorities and needs of the business. A digital vision helps to chart a holistic technology roadmap that reflects the priorities and needs of the business. Share on X

  1. Collaboration

Speed is of essence in the digital age. Leveraging others’ assets, networks, and expertise accelerate execution and realization of goals.

External suppliers and their networks provide a rich source of knowledge and potential collaboration partners. Ignoring the power of this resource could be detrimental.

Careful vetting of collaboration opportunities using an objective approach can reduce time-to-market and build competitive advantages. Win-win collaboration boosts the ability to grow and scale quickly.

  1. Transparency

Clear communication of business direction and goals informs employees about the business. Being open about the state of business and changes it needs to embrace builds trust. Involving employees in the decision process engages them.

Transparency involves sharing pertinent information with the right audience at the right time. Frank and honest communication gets buy-in.

Despite the ease of broadcasting information in the digital age, two-way communication is a must. Face-to-face dialogs are more effective for building rapport and commitment.

  1. Employee development

Technical knowledge and skills become outdated quickly. Investment in employee development demonstrates commitment to maintain a knowledgeable workforce. It is also a great way to attract new talent.

This requires an allocation of budget to develop skillsets in technology, empowering employees to explore and adopt new ways to do their work.

When employees aren’t fearful about change, they are open to adopt new technologies. Most employees like the opportunity to try new things using modern technologies that make their work easier. Employee development fosters loyalty.

  1. Innovation

Modernizing operational processes, creating new products and services, and collaborating with partners in unique ways are results of innovation. Businesses ought to innovate by leveraging technology.

To innovate, leaders need to support innovation initiatives by allowing time and budget for that purpose. By establishing guidelines on what constitutes success and an effective way to apply learnings from failures, businesses benefit from continuous improvements.

Support for innovation cultivates a healthy change culture which is essential for businesses to adapt quickly.

In the digital age, leaders need to identify opportunities and execute. Those who keep a pulse on trends and act swiftly would succeed in keeping the business relevant and competitive.

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