A guest article by Gabriele Kaier
Digital transformation is changing traditional business models and familiar processes. How do you deal with these changes as a manager? What does a digital leader have to do to master one of the biggest challenges for companies, digitization? How do leadership skills need to be developed to plan and implement transformation? Well-known experts have answered our call for the #timetablog blog parade on this topic. We have summarized 3 exciting contributions for you here:
On the art of confidently doubting and creating trust
Urs M. Krämer, CEO of Sopra Steria Consulting
What do managers use to justify their claim to leadership when employees know more than they do? Do we still need a “boss” at all when we have long been discussing the hierarchy-free company?
Agile decisions instead of traditional thinking
Companies must react quickly and flexibly to changing market conditions. Urs M. Krämer therefore sees the ability to doubt and to question the existing [nbsp]as one of the most important characteristics of a good digital leader. This also includes reflecting on one’s own leadership qualities.
Digital leaders don’t have to know everything
Make decisions, even if they are not the right ones, and correct them quickly if necessary. He encourages his employees to get actively involved and creates the conditions for collective intelligence to develop in the best possible way. He promotes doubt in his organization, yet moves forward with confidence.
For Urs M. Krämer, the art of confidently doubting is the greatest achievement of the good digital leader.
#ADCD, a new corporate culture and customer focus
Anne M. Schüller, management thought leader, keynote speaker and bestselling author
A redesign of the corporate culture is essential to prepare for the high speed of the future. A digital leader is characterized by the following basic skills under the acronym #ADCD: becoming more agile, thinking more digitally, acting more collaboratively, and daring to be disruptive. What causes disruption, apart from digitization per se?
New Business Models: Game Changers and Internet Warriors
Disruptors don’t enter an existing market, they create a new one. They are super-agile, have a wide range of interests and a global outlook, and recognize potential at lightning speed. They can quickly identify market differences and combine solutions in a completely new way. The adept handling of online media is their most important asset. Conventional things are radically questioned and existing things are combined in a completely new way. They focus on what is better for customers of today and tomorrow than what established companies currently offer. Every unsolved customer problem becomes a successful starting point for them.
They look specifically for problems and a suitable solution for customers and think “from the customer’s point of view”. They do not organize themselves in silos, but cross-functionally around customer projects. And they improve iteratively – especially through constant dialog with customers. The power now lies with the customers. With their actions, in which they combine to form virtual swarms, they can decide the life and death of a provider.
Anne M. Schüller advises to quickly start a process [nbsp]to reinvent yourself from the inside, even if you are currently successful in the market.
What makes a good digital leader?
Ines Gensinger, Author [&] Head of Business and Consumer Communications at Microsoft Germany
The leadership principles for good leadership have been the same for years. Bad bosses are “superiors” and they have had their day, that much is certain for Ines Gensinger. But what characterizes a digital leader now?
What has changed compared to good leadership 20 years ago?
Even 20 years ago, a leader needed skills like empathy, openness, respect and listening. But what is new are the diverse transformation processes, the constant change in requirements and circumstances at a rapid pace.
Employees work more self-determined, in distributed teams, even different time zones. Hierarchies are increasingly dissolving, processes are becoming more transparent. Smart technologies and the associated new ways of working are driving these developments.
What does this mean for managers?
Digital leaders need a mindset and skillset with flexibility, openness and a great affinity for smart tools. They must learn to lead anew with these parameters and focus on the well-being of the team.
Ines Gensinger also sees trust and giving responsibility as two other important characteristics: “Good leadership works through goals.
Digital leadership, like digital transformation, is not a process that can be completed, and the same applies to work and leadership: What is a good path today will not necessarily be a good fit tomorrow. Therefore, a digital leader must question himself and cultivate an open culture of mistakes and feedback in order to continuously develop himself further.
For Ines Gensinger, there is no patent remedy for digital leadership; for her, the right mindset is crucial.
With the digital transformation, companies are facing completely new challenges for which neither the classic corporate structures nor the institutionalization of decision-making are designed.
All experts agree that established business models and management approaches need to be profoundly changed. Leadership will certainly not become superfluous in the digital age, but it will have to change substantially:
Reacting quickly and flexibly to changing market conditions, confidently doubting and questioning what already exists – Urs M. Krämer sees this as one of the most important characteristics of a good digital leader.
As Ines Gensinger confirms, there is no blueprint for a good digital leader; the decisive factor is the right mindset and skillset with the aim of promoting the performance of each individual team member for the benefit of the company.
“Disrupt yourself before you get disrupted!” Anne M. Schüller advises getting involved quickly and reinventing yourself from the inside out, even if you are currently successful on the market.