Strong Leadership in the 21st Century: 10 Skills to Influence Office Culture and Change

Posted by Guthrie-Jensen Consultants

“Leadership deals with people and their dynamics, which are continually changing. The challenge of leadership is to create change and facilitate growth.”

— John Maxwell

Modern technology has definitely improved productivity in the workplace by leaps and bounds. New technological infrastructure now allows certain tasks to be completed in just a fraction of the time, by allowing collaboration between people who are thousands of miles from one another. However, these new improvements also bring changes to the dynamics of office culture. Leaders should recognize these changes and learn to adapt to them.

Leadership roles have changed a lot in recent years, probably as a result of the ongoing changes in office culture as well. Because of shifts in the industry brought about by cultural and technological changes, the leaders of today should follow suit and make sure their skill sets aren’t left behind in the game.

Here’s an infographic about strong leadership in the 21st century, and the 10 leadership skills that will help you influence a positive office culture and drive your business to success.

Strong Leadership in the 21st Century: 10 Skills to Influence Office Culture and Change [Infographic]
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<a href=""><img style="width:100%;" src=""></a><br>Infographic Design By <a href="">Guthrie-Jensen Consultants</a>

What is 21st Century Leadership?

Strong leadership in the 21st century is nothing like 20th-century leadership. In fact, if you look at both kinds of leadership more closely, you will notice that strong leadership in the 21st century is almost the exact opposite of the previous generation’s style. The focus of today’s leadership is to build relationships and serve others—a complete departure from that of the 20th century, which focused on tasks and transactions.

In addition, this generation’s approach to leadership is more bottom-up rather than top-down, as was popular in previous decades. Bosses are no longer authoritative, but instructive in how they deal with employees because they value their personal well-being as well. The general idea is that for employees to work better, they should be empowered, not merely taking orders from higher-ups.

Principles of 21st Century Leadership

Even the principles of strong leadership have changed over the past few decades. No longer are bosses the only leaders in a company. The modern principle is that because everyone can serve others, everyone can be a leader in his or her own right.

Jim Collins, author of the critically acclaimed book Good to Great, says that there’s a difference between good leaders and great leaders, which he calls “Level 5 leaders.” According to Collins, what makes strong, great leaders is their unique combination of personal humility when dealing with people, and their indomitable will and ambition to achieve something great—not for themselves, but for their organization and its mission.

The value of people in organizations has also changed, and now it’s considered the most important asset of any company. That is why more employers are investing in their team members through management training in the Philippines so that they can remain relevant in a competitive industry.

Moreover, gone are the days when bosses shout demeaning words at employees because of a failed task. The focus has shifted to building relationships among employees and between leaders and employees. If people work well together, they’ll be able to build and achieve more things together.

10 Skills to Influence Change in the Office

1. Accountability

Effective supervisors today are not afraid to admit mistakes, and make sure they learn from these errors because the team’s collective welfare is more valuable than their ego. As a result, employees will have a better understanding of what accountability means when it comes to owning up to mistakes.

2. Responding to Feedback

A strong leader in the 21st century is someone willing to accept feedback regardless if it’s coming from a co-superior or a regular employee. The modern leader believes many heads are better than one, and that he does not know everything.

3. Facilitates Communication

The modern leader encourages employees to share responsibilities and accountability in certain tasks. This arrangement gives them a sense of ownership and accomplishment in whatever it is they achieve. It also urges employees to work together, not just for the task to be done, but because they genuinely believe that this responsibility can help the team move forward.

4. Desire to Grow

A great leader always believes s/he still has room for improvement, even if s/he already excels in performing his responsibilities to employees. This leader never gets tired of learning new principles and welcomes new experiences as long as it helps improve his or her skills and abilities.

5. Promotes Transparency

A 21st-century leader earns the complete trust of employees by remaining transparent with them. S/he knows that for employees to understand the whole task, they must be provided with the bigger picture and supplied all the details.

6. Effective Delegation

One of the key characteristics of a strong leader today is the discipline not to micromanage employees. S/he can do this because s/he’s not only confident in delegating tasks to employees; s/he is also confident that they can deliver with flying colors.

7. Breaking Down Hierarchical Boundaries

S/he never allows differences in position or seniority to hinder collaboration between company employees. Strong leaders believe that the opportunity to collaborate is more important than position and seniority titles.

8. Firm Decision-Making

Today’s strong and responsible leaders are absolutely confident with their professional skills and knowledge. These bosses will see through a particular directive until its completion. Of course, if the instruction or initiative was a mistake, these leaders are also willing to admit them.

9. Ready to Serve

A strong leader places the interests of others above his or hers. S/he believes that the strength of a company lies in its loyal and skilled employees, not just the management.

10. Open to Change

They are willing to adapt to the new trends and be drivers of change in their industry. These leaders remain optimistic that changing processes can help the company continue to thrive, even if that means scrapping conventional methods.

Future-Proof Your Workplace

As the old saying goes, “change is the only permanent thing in this world.” Whether you like it or not, people, workplaces, and professional principles are changing right now as we speak. One of the more recent evolutions in office culture is the acceptance of remote work—something that has often been considered a taboo topic in company workplaces in the past.

This proves the inevitable fact that as companies and businesses move forward into the future, leaders should be the catalysts that would kick-start the change to adapt. As a modern boss, it’s up to you to decide whether to keep up with those changes or risk becoming irrelevant in this modern office culture.

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