Article (November-2020)

Articles

Leadership must embody optimism

Dr. Sujaya Banerjee

Designation : -   CEO

Organization : -  Capstone People Consulting, Mumbai

01-Nov-2020

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The Corona virus has impacted lives and livelihoods across the world, infected and killed millions, and clearly been emblematic of an Era that is marked with disruptions.

While this is clearly a black-swan event, we cannot say it is not an extension of a decade of disruptions, marked by geo political unrest, disruptive technologies and innovations - following the Global financial crisis in 2008 that changed our world!

But we survived that black swan and we will survive this one too-except this requires businesses the world over to learn the 'New Business Unusual', which involves delivering Business results in the middle of a Global pandemic.

This brings us to what kind of leadership mindsets do we need to survive these unprecedented times? These times are such equalizers- No Leadership no matter how senior and seasoned have dealt with business, productivity and performance in an all pervasive global pandemic before?

Needless to say, beyond the initial confusions of mobilising their workforce- getting people and technology to work- the challenges of being productive from remote working has been one of the biggest challenges for organizations. In fact this transition to 'Work from Home' has easily been the biggest change agenda managed globally -across countries. Even as supply chains broke down, there was a race to retain both customers and employees -and both needed to be kept engaged, even as many industries struggled with the exit of migrant and other workers into the unforeseeable future.

Lock downs further made mobility of goods and services restrictive slowing down the entire rescue operations to survive. Having said that, let us explore what leadership mindsets can be most pertinent in times of unrelenting crisis such as this?

Leaders in the new economy need to leverage pedagogy of learning that is personal, intimate and allows the leader to draw from past experiences of adversity. This cannot be gleaned from text books or peer points. It needs to involve a unique connecting of dots, drawing from vast reservoirs of intimate experiences and the agreement to show vulnerability and learn from others.

  • Contextual intelligence to interpret the context astutely.
  • Moral Intelligence to do people right by demonstrating human-centricity in leadership and upholding the espoused values of the organization especially in difficult times.
  • Transformative intelligence to become the credible evangelist and role model for change and agility and to challenge the status quo.
  • Technological Intelligence to leverage technology and build savviness to use technology to come closer to both the customer and to talent.

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