What Progress Have You Made with Your Leadership Priorities for 2022?

This week we are shifting gears as the year is passing us by rather quickly, which is why it is a good time to stop, reflect and explore where you are at with your leadership priorities for the year.

At the beginning of 2022, DDI identified the top trending leadership topics by examining the content shared by 20 top influencers on Twitter. Based on their analysis, here are the top 10 leadership topics and areas of focus for the year ahead:

  1. Employee Well-Being
  2. The Great Re-Alignment (Resignation)
  3. Reskilling Leaders
  4. Automation
  5. Employee Experience
  6. People Centered Technology & Solutions
  7. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)
  8. Remote work exposes new and old biases
  9. New frontier for HR analytics
  10. Ethics reigns in the war for talent

What has your organization and leadership team done to tackle these priorities and areas of focus? Chipping away at all of them might be a logical strategy but let’s be realistic. From a strategic and big-picture perspective, what is most important for you and your organization based on your employee population and current state of business operations? What is imperative that you must move the needle on and what can wait until later in the year or next year, perhaps? Do you need any external support to assist in tackling some of these items?

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and organizational transformation takes time, effort, and relentless focus. Technology-focused projects take time, as does shifting organization culture, but when I look at the list, there are 7 out of the 10 areas that leaders have a direct impact on and are accountable for as it relates to your people, culture, and results. Do not get me wrong. Items 4, 6 and 9 are all somehow connected to technology, and it is leadership that steers the ship on these priorities, but all the other items are driven by how leaders show up and lead their respective people.  

In my humble opinion, if I had to rank what should be number one for organizations in terms of achieving the most success and progress in the years to come, reskilling leadership should rise to the top, and here’s why.  

Make Reskilling Your Leaders a Top Priority

You can have the best leading-edge technology and solutions in place to manage your business, but for most service-based organizations, it’s people who are delivering behind the scenes and upfront for your clients. If your people do not feel supported, valued, or heard, it will have a direct impact on the client experience and your bottom line.  

Gallup reports that leaders are the primary influencers of employee engagement scores, affecting 70% of the variance in scores. Leaders have a big influence on culture and workplace environment, both of which strongly affect employee engagement. If your leaders lack the right skills to create engagement and drive productivity in the most productive and collaborative way possible, then you will continue to underperform and may struggle to achieve results.

To build on this notion, you can be the smartest, most ethical leader at the table, with extensive tenure and industry experience, but if you do not possess the soft skills to connect with people at the human level, your success will be limited. In addition, if you are stuck in the old ways of working and collaborating, you will have a hard time leading in the new world of work.  

Today’s world demands inclusive and collaborative leadership, and the ability to leverage technology to connect with individuals and teams. Most importantly, leaders must have the necessary facilitation skills to lead focused and action-oriented discussions and meetings.

Leaders also need to be aware of their biases. How you show up and really value and promote diversity, equity, and inclusion means you have the right balance of both soft and hard skills to model the right thinking and behavior to create the ideal culture for your organization.  

Being open to change and thinking outside the box are also critical skills to be able to navigate successfully in our current and future landscape.

The number one reason why people leave companies has not changed in the past few decades. People leave due to the lack of leadership/poor leadership, which continues to be top of the list, and sadly, that is not a surprise.

We encourage you to be brutally honest with yourself. Is your leadership capability and bench strength where it needs to be to be able to move the needle on tackling these top priorities? 

Let’s Talk

Being clear about what’s most important for you, your team and organization is so imperative to everyone’s collective success. Striking the right balance between working in and on the business is also a challenge a lot of leaders continue to face. We are here to help. I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic and invite you to contact me today.

Call me at 1-855-871-3374 or email me at joanne.trotta@leadersedgeinc.ca. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

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