Staying on top of your game as a leader

Fast as light computers, revised free trade agreements, global competitiveness, a more sophisticated and at times unpredictable workforce and a legion of environmental and human rights activists are just some of the factors that have influenced the corporate world and will continue its influence well into the year 2030. Advances in biotechnology and modified government laws will help the workforce grow even older, with individuals remaining productive until the age of seventy and beyond. Meanwhile, young people will require a decade of education before they can fill the shoes of those who finally retire.

The need for Leaders to follow four key success strategies in order to thrive in the upcoming age of turbulence and change is imperative for corporate success. These strategies are as follows.

Strategy # 1:  Nurturing The Research Base.

We will see a significant shortfall in the creation of scientists, mathematicians, researchers and engineers by 2022. Due to the declining pool of talent, the best Leaders will be the those who are able to connect with and rely upon external research sources such as, other companies, universities, colleges and even governments. Superstar Leaders will have to sell their organizations on the fact that at times they will have to subsidize research and track evolving operations while investing in parallel programs. The real success stories will centre around Leaders who are proactive in their business, understand the external environment and can facilitate the transfer of knowledge from the external source to the internal user.

Strategy # 2: Global Planning.

Leaders of today must learn about strategic planning in a global environment. As we move increasingly to multi national “corporations  and global business units, Leaders will need to put much of the manufacturing, research and development and marketing activities in the hands of local nationals. This means that Managers will have to be more astute to internal capacity planning initiatives, operation utilization capabilities and point of sale fundamentals while local nationals become part of the strategic planning process. To further complicate the leadership world, understanding technology and products will not be enough. Leaders will need to understand the culture and religion in the countries in which they work or, cultural diversification in the workplace of the world.

Strategy # 3: High Touch Leadership.

Now, more than ever, management / leadership is a science and an art. The science side is understanding the business and the art side is understanding people. Successful Leaders must have a full range of artistic qualities because they will need the ability to inspire, attract and motivate talented people from a range of environments and demographics. Given the declining pool of talent, money alone will not be the critical factor in attracting and retaining talented people. Talent must feel that the Leader has a deep interest in their career development. Leaders ought to ensure that personal and professional beliefs and corporate values are interwoven with position descriptions and short to the point / numerous performance feedback sessions. Leaders must realize that talent will not be retainable if they do not enjoy what they are doing and Leaders fail to communicate effectively on a regular basis.

Strategy # 4: Educating People.

Good people leave organizations if there are no opportunities because they have the confidence, willingness and self esteem to go elsewhere and be successful. Poor people stay because nobody else wants them. The most important ingredient for managerial success is a high quality workforce. Brains are in; Braun is out. With that in mind the development of employee knowledge will be job number one for managers. Upgrading the knowledge base of the workforce will mean continuously keeping employees on the learning curve by targeting skills that increase job performance. Focusing on continuous improvement  will drive the need for the workforce to become educated in the strategic thinking and innovative problem solving processes. Leaders will find that “corporate knowledge ratios” (a systematic blended measurement of specialized skills, leadership qualities, degree / diploma employees, skilled employees and secondary crewing) will need to be calculated and monitored because it will provide the foundation of customized training to fit the needs of employees.

When all is said and done management success has little to do with personality and even less to do with charisma. Management success is measured by results. The aforementioned four key success strategies will not guarantee results. They will enable you to benchmark the path towards results.

About The Author.

Nicholas Pollice is President of The Pollice Management Consulting Group located in Southern Ontario, Canada. An international presenter and consultant, he is known as a leader in operations management.  Nicholas conducts programs in human behaviour, conflict resolution, negotiation, leadership and management and has been a consultant since 1989. Author of several management and leadership publications, his presentations have been consistently ranked in the top10 %.  See Nicholas’ bio and services on the PMCG. Website at