“The world today is far more connected and fast changing than ever. Leadership and innovation can come from anyone, anywhere but it’s up to the people who lead people in the work place to create the environment where this can happen. Today and in the future we will need a new mindset of leadership which recognises that the potential of people at work is greater than ever, if they are inspired, supported and aligned with a strong common purpose.” – Steve Vamos, Non Executive Director, Telstra President, Society for Knowledge Economics
I think that anybody who believes that the traditional business landscape is still in existence has their head buried firmly in the twentieth century sand. Whilst some industries and some corporate environments remain more rigid than others, there is no doubting that both business etiquette and the ‘rules of engagement’ have moved on. It may not be as rapidly as some of us would like, but nonetheless, the goalposts – and the goals – of modern leaders are shifting. And only for the better.
The world is a very small place. Increased technology, increased knowledge, economic instability – all of these combine to make change necessary. We must evolve to survive. We must evolve to make our businesses economically viable, to keep clients engaged, and most importantly to keep staff engaged.
As leaders, we need to be constantly willing to be the ones motivating and guiding. We are the ones to whom others are looking for inspiration. We must always be on the lookout for potential new ways of doing business – we must be prepared to test and try out different approaches. And any approach must involve every member of our companies.
This is not about a revolution; this is about evolution. If you are a company that makes glass jars, I am not saying that you should suddenly stop making glass jars and start making shoes. What I am saying is that you can find the best possible way to make glass jars that engages and involves your people. Give them a voice in your methodologies. Be open to conversation and advice.
A challenge for big corporates? Absolutely. Unattainable? Absolutely not.
There’s an evolution going on. Make yourself a part of it. Be willing to instigate change, to give your staff a common purpose, a common goal – a say in what they are striving towards. Because it’s the way not just of the business future – but of the present.