“High performing leaders create an environment that makes people want to succeed, engage with them and help them to grow. They’re choosing to join the leader of that organisation as well as the organisation. He said that he felt that a digital leader could definitely be a talent magnet for an organisation.”
Re-energising teams, mentorship and inspiring performance to a different level are going to become more and more important for leaders. It isn’t necessarily a new situation, as many people have joined businesses as they believed in leadership throughout time.
Dave said: “There are all sorts of different metrics that can be introduced in this type of approach. These will effectively make leaders and managers have to change their mindset and behave differently. Development of teams is no longer going to be part of someone else’s responsibility, the onus will be on them.”
Amanda raised an earlier point that Dave had made about the fact that going forward authenticity was likely to become a capability. She mentioned that she was interested to hear more about that and how HR teams would need to take this into consideration.
In response to this, Dave acknowledged that employees had leaned on each other in different ways and got to know one another a little more. His interpretation was that this has made people more authentic in themselves, as people understand one another more.
“Leaders also need to start to care and bring that authenticity. Care isn’t necessarily a word that you associate with leadership, but I do think that leaders need to start to show more care at their core.”
They need to show interest in the person as a whole, not just as an employee or as a resource.
Leaders also need to demonstrate more awareness of work-life balance. This has become extremely blurred in the current environment. There can’t just be the expectation that emails will be responded to overnight or that employees are always available. It’s about seeing your employees as people — and that’s a key part of being a talent magnet.
He likened it to issues such as diversity, equality and inclusion, pointing out that these would only become a true part of the workplace. It’s down to the leaders to make it happen at all levels, and making people feel valued and important, and that they matter to the leadership team. It goes back to authenticity and actually demonstrating that people are valued.
Amanda added that the relationship between work and personal life is being redefined, shifting and changing to become more sensitive to needs outside of work. For example if people are juggling children at home along with work. Previously, leaders were at a distance and authoritative but now it feels warmer and more embracing, understanding the human element of the workplace.
Dave related to this and again said the current situation had made things a little more trusting, connected and human, adding:
“I think we’ve got too hung up on the old world of command and control when really we should be looking at performance and development with employers understanding and demonstrating their responsibility in that. Leaders and managers need to provide that role modelling that everyone always talks about.”