What are the top three leadership trends for 2021? The world has changed rapidly in the past year, and businesses are working hard to keep up. They’re implementing new technology, changing their marketing strategies, and rethinking their recruitment tactics. But as they change their external strategies, are they complementing them with internal changes as well?
According to a study by the Human Resources Professionals Association, 63% of millennials feel their employers are not fully developing their leadership skills. Millennials are estimated to be at least 75% of the workforce by 2025. If businesses do not shift their leadership and development practices to meet the coming changes, they will have a hard time staying relevant, let alone innovative.
These are the top three leadership trends in 2021:
1. Adaptive leadership
As technology and the workforce continue to change, leaders need to be prepared to “do things differently”. Adaptive leadership is a great way to address that need. Put simply, adaptive leadership is a framework that allows both individuals and teams to thrive and be successful in challenging environments. Instead of digging their heels in and forcing their team to continue doing things the same way, adaptive leaders see when a process isn’t working and take gradual steps to implement processes that do.
The workforce of the future is poised to be more diverse and more educated than any generation before them, and they are also more comfortable with technology than many earlier generations. This means that they will be poised for innovation and ready to find a better way to complete tasks. If leadership isn’t prepared to change with them and support them in their innovations, they will see fewer employees that are willing to speak up when they see solutions to problems the company is facing and an increase in employee turnover.
2. Emotional intelligence in leadership
Many businesses are becoming flatter and less hierarchical, and management is working more closely with employees at all levels. This means that leadership needs to have the emotional intelligence to be able to work with and empower their employees.
Additionally, turnover is becoming more of an issue for organizations, and addressing it is crucial to a business’ success. The cost of employee turnover continues to grow – the work institute recommended a conservative 30% turnover cost in 2020, which translates to a rough $15,000 average per employee.
Smart businesses are seeing that engaged, happy employees are better at their jobs, and tend to stay in one place for a longer amount of time. If management doesn’t focus on developing and utilizing emotional intelligence, they will find themselves struggling to attract and retain high-quality talent and dealing with the fallout of high turnover.
3. Results-oriented leadership
As businesses move into the future, an important shift leaders can make is to focus on results rather than the methods employees use to get there or how many hours they work.
Autonomy at work has been shown to benefit employees’ wellbeing and their output, and it helps employees feel more satisfied in their jobs. Instead of being micromanaged and told exactly what to do, employees in results-oriented businesses are given the opportunity to utilize their experience, find a solution on their own, and learn from the experience. They also have more ownership of their work and feel both supported and trusted by their managers. Ultimately, autonomy helps employees feel more invested in their work, which leads to more engaged employees, resulting in less turnover.
Stepping into the future of leadership at Concordia University Chicago
At Concordia University Chicago, we understand how important it is to have leaders that are not only willing to change, but are also always looking for ways to improve their outputs and help their teams thrive.
Our leadership programs are designed to develop our students into successful, forward-looking leaders who will not settle for the status quo. Whatever your career aspirations are, you’ll leave Concordia University Chicago prepared to be an innovative leader.
To learn more about Concordia University Chicago and our leadership programs, visit our website today.