What are you doing right now to lead your business into the 2030s? This is a question that is circulating in boardrooms and being discussed at the highest levels of the C-Suite conversations.
Have you considered that by 2034, there will be less than 1% of Baby Boomers in the workforce? We have seen the loss of pension funds, retirement assets, and all the dedicated work to keep a paycheck going spill over into the Gen Xers who took it upon themselves to work hard, so they could play hard, before aging? We have all talked about it and continue to talk about work-life balance, but that is about to change as well.
Rising up the ranks are younger managers who are gifted with technology skills and have a natural ability to accept change and fight for change.
Questions they will consider:
- Will 50-60-hour work weeks continue to be the norm?
- Are 8-5 jobs necessary? What about the work environment?
- What can technology do more efficiently?
- Is there too much technology?
- What cause are we serving today?
- Who can we help?
To answer these questions and gain insightful answers, I foresee that the following leadership styles, skills, and behaviors will need to be in place:
The Curious Drummer: This leader is about vision! A leader who is a visionary and forward-thinker is key to leading beyond the next 10 years because they will lay a foundation for the future by creating the future goals of the company. This type of leader takes the time to stop, analyze, and create a strategy for moving forward. They think beyond what currently is by designing strategies, brainstorming ideas around a plan, assessing the plan, and deciding whether to risk it or not. The Drummer is the heartbeat of the company, interested in plotting the path for the best future for the company by seeking out and uncovering opportunities for growth and progress.
The Trustworthy Rhythm Guitarist: This leader is about belief! A leader who is trustworthy can bring rhythm and cooperation to an organization. Everyone feels confident in rallying around them because they believe in them. They are leaders who say what they mean and do what they say. For example, in sales, there are goals, stretch goals, and unattainable goals; it is the trustworthy leader that will effectively set goals that people (sales & operations) can achieve. They are the leader that people trust, the leader that naturally makes people want to perform better. That is why this leader will keep harmony and the desired results will become a reality. They enjoy the art of planning and find success in collaboration. They are the trust-builders who are willing to make the tough decisions and take responsibility for those decisions.
The Optimistic Vocalist: This leader is about hope! They give people hope that tomorrow will be bright by speaking confidently and strategically in their communication. They are the leaders who look to empower and encourage, making it easy for others to follow the strategic business goals. This leader is business savvy yet altruistic; they balance business and people, which will lead to success because they can command a room and empower others to come on the journey while providing clarity and direction. The optimistic leader will seek out the strengths of others and help them build upon them, while simultaneously inspiring people to improve on their blind spots as well. This leader has the power to propel people to act.
Therefore, as we work our way into the next decades, the leaders who can see the vision, empower belief, and provide hope are the leaders that will excel in revenue growth, creativity, and retention. These are the businesses where employees will want to work and create a future.
Begin with looking at the next generation of talent, the emerging and high potential leaders. Do they have these skills and behavior traits, will they be the next ones to bring innovative ideas for future growth and will they lead with hope, not fear?