How to empower future business leader is one question every businessman should be concerned about. There is no denying of the fact that businesses need strong leaders in order to survive and thrive in the fast paced economic environment. It is an open secret that developing and nurturing future leaders is one of the greatest, if not the greatest, challenges business face nowadays. In this regard, following lines explain why we need leaders, what the attributes of great leaders are and how to empower future leaders.
Why Organizations Fail to Develop Good Future Leaders? The leadership in most organizations is inaccessible to the lower staff. Similarly, they commonly keep employees uninformed about organizational vision,future plans and course of action. They also expect their employees to work extremely hard and do whatever it takes to attain impossible goals. Most leaders and managers do not recognize the hard work and the efforts employees put in place and this is the biggest reason why organizations fail to develop good future leaders.
The lack of trust among employees and higher management is one of the fundamental reasons organizations are failing to produce great future leaders. It is also pertinent to note that the trend is uniform throughout the world. Unless organizations are able to build trust among leaders and employees and address all the problems discussed in the above paragraph, it is impossible for leaders to develop.
Why Succession Planning is Important? The world of business has totally changed during the last few years. The average lifespan of S & P 500 companies have reduced from 25-35 years to mere 10-15 years. Even the organizations who once dominated their respective industries are struggling to survive, Nokia being typical example. Similarly, no one would have thought that Apple will face a stiff challenge from Google and Samsung in the international mobile market.
The business world is still changing and that demands the development of strong and visionary leaders who are able to lead their organization effectively and successfully through thick and thin. If organizations are to survive, they have to have leaders with strong decision making skills and the ability to take on the unexpected challenges with courage and confidence.
Attributes of Future Leaders: There might be many people in your organizations that have a charismatic personality. Similarly, there are people who happen to be great workers or in good books of the higher authorities. Everyone believes that they are going to be next leaders. All these characteristics are necessary to develop as a leader but there are some attributes which potential future leaders must possess. These attributes, commonly known as Dispositional Characteristics, are explained as under.
Self-Efficacy: These people are confident, trust worthiness, dependable and self-starting. They put in extra effort in whatever they do to get the desired results.
Core Self Evaluation: These people control their own destiny and don’t let others create hurdles in their way to success. They are self-motivated, set their own goals and do whatever possible to attain those goals.
Lotus of Control: Great leaders believe in doing things right rather than doing the right things. They have the confidence to control not only themselves but overcome the external pressure as well. They also have the ability to respond positively to the setbacks and adverse circumstances.
Open to Experience: Good leaders are great learners and open to new challenges and experiences. They are creative, imaginative and can face failure with grace.
Personal Resilience: They are extremely resilient and never let failures and setbacks take hold of them. They are internally motivated, curious, zestful and optimistic.
How to Empower Future Leaders? There are many people who are extrovert and great at presenting themselves but have nothing really to offer. Such people cannot become good leaders because cosmetic changes give cosmetic result. We need to produce charismatic leaders who have all the characters described in the above section.
Every organization has to develop a culture which is conducive for people to learn new things and develop into good leaders. In this regard, there are four main types of organizational culture.
The Control Culture: Control cultures are mainly authoritative and directive in nature. They have strong hierarchy and require employees to adhere to requirements and policies. Such cultures are not suitable for employee development, let alone the development of new leaders.
The Competence Culture: Competence cultures require people to be task driven, rational and analytical. They encourage people to work individually and be expert in their field. That is why this type of culture also prevents leadership development because leaders need to look after the entire organizations not individuals.
Cultivation Culture: Cultivation Culture, as the name suggests, empower individuals to take their own decisions and be open to change as well. They require people to be charismatic, dynamic, caring and expressive, making it perfect for leaders to develop.
The Collaborative Culture: Collaborative culture requires team members to collaborate with each other, be team players and most importantly, generalists. Again, this type of culture is perfect for people, who want to assume leadership roles in the future, to develop and evolve.
Gone are the days when someone will become a “leader” only by attending few leadership training programs. The journey to becoming effective leader is long and it takes years to develop all the characteristics mentioned above. Therefore, it is important for organizations to develop a culture which foster leadership development. Similarly, potential or aspiring leaders need to seize all these opportunities rather than relying on the failed model of attending leadership programs.