Key Leadership Challenges
Whatever way you look at it, leadership effects organizational performance, either positively or negatively and this statement is borne out by the plethora of research that has been carried out over time. However, thus far, this research has failed to accurately identify how leadership directly engages with employee participation in the organization, which ultimately is the key driver of real performance.
Leadership is an evolving science and needs to identify and understand ways in which good leadership can lead to increased employee participation, essentially asking the fundamental question of how leaders can create the right context in which employees become stakeholders and are able to perform at their best.
At it’s most basic, leadership is key to the individuals, the teams and the business performance and in these tough economic times it makes sense to drive better performance that benefits both the organization and its employees. This article is aimed at helping leaders explore and achieve sustainable high levels of performance in today’s fast moving business environment. The core of this improved performance and longevity is that employee engagement lies at the heart of business improvement and that leadership has a disproportionate impact on individuals, the teams and the organization.
All organizations have cultures, be they good, bad or indifferent, which affect performance. It is understanding the cultures that exist within organizations that one can find the key that will unlock the latent potential that exists within the business and within its people. Rather than being entrenched and historic, cultures need to be flexible, adaptable, and responsive to the changes that happen internally and externally to the organization. They need to possess no boundaries, they need to reflect positive learning and encourage innovation and be supported by meaningful values. Both leadership and leaders are key to the development of the cultures that support individual development and business growth.
However, it would be true to say that many organizations waste vast sums of money simply by appointing the wrong individuals to leadership positions, by not fully developing them to be effective leaders or asking them to lead with their hands tied behind their back.
The Challenges for Effective Leadership
Businesses today are facing many challenges than previously and the pressure of competition is growing all the time and change is now a constant. This means that the requirement for leadership is now crucial in order for business not just to survive but grow and sustain this improvement.
Research today shows that the average leader in now nearing retirement age and the pool of talent from which to draw new leaders is diminishing. If this research is true, and there is no reason to doubt this, leaders will be in short supply. Where will these future leaders come from and how will businesses meet these leadership needs?
Currently, because organizations need to be highly effective and competitive in order to deliver the best levels of service and support whilst managing their personnel costs, it inevitably falls to the business leaders to get more from their people cost effectively but also in a way that increases employee engagement, morale, motivation and well-being and all the while being sustainable. This raises the questions about how leadership can truly make effective use of both the social and human resources in the business.
The answer lies in enabling businesses to increase its leadership capacity at the same time as generating the culture and environment that allows and empowers employees to produce more, to be more motivated and to be more engaged with the business and to enjoy a sense of real well-being.