Are You Ready to Lead Your Company into the Future?

BY Kathy Crosett
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Are you ready for the future? Is your company ready to take on the challenges of the next technology revolution? In a recent Fast Company post, Jared Lindzon describes the new type of leadership necessary to survive in a world where the pace of business is speeding up.

Back in the day, an old-​school CEO could count on keeping his position until he reached age 65 and walked out the door with a gold watch. The industrial era was all about making small changes to the assembly line and planning for a 2–3% increase in output and revenue every year.

Lindzon discusses the “new value system,” as outlined by Jeff Wong, global chief innovation officer at Ernst & Young. The system is all about expanding the vision of senior executives beyond the bottom line. Here are two of the five key ingredients successful leaders of the future need in order to sustain their vision.

Emotional Intelligence

With a flat organization designed to rapidly respond to shifts in the marketplace, CEOs cannot run their companies like military divisions. The rank and file employees are not interested in being told what to do. You’ve hired highly trained, intelligent employees. It’s your job to gently guide these employees through an organic process, often seeking consensus about how to proceed when a new threat or opportunity arises. While your operating environment may often seem chaotic during this process, you must be able to keep your team focused on the goals you set together. Expect to spend more time on this aspect of your job. You'll need to pay attention to which employees are having trouble navigating the new road map and coach them as necessary.

Leverage Technology

As technology infiltrates every part of the organization, the best leaders will use these tools to increase efficiency. You need to stay current with new technological advances. If you can apply unique insight into how to use technology to develop a new product or service in your industry, you’ll be one step ahead of the competition. Understanding technology will allow you to determine which tasks should be automated or further automated, and which tasks still need the human touch. Getting this balance right can impact your bottom line in a big way.

If your current training and development tools aren’t keeping you current with the latest thinking on emotional intelligence and technology, it may be time to update your curriculum.