Leadership Mindsets for the New Economy

Successful companies are passionate about fostering a community of leaders with new mindsets.

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Future of Leadership in the Digital Economy

Digitalization and other critical factors are transforming what it means to be a great leader in a new environment. Discover the cultural and strategic shifts organizations must embrace to prepare their leaders to succeed.

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“Organizations need to completely rethink what they are about and what it means to lead. It’s not about one person or even those residing at the top anymore. In today’s world, everyone has to adopt a leadership mindset. We have to think of ourselves as members of a leadership community.”

— Patty McCord, former chief talent officer, Netflix

Are you able to change the culture of your organization? It’s possible, perhaps, if you can articulate what your culture is or if you are a CEO or C-suite executive. But let me ask a different question: Are you able to set a new tone and mindset for how your team, your project members, or your function work together and with others, both inside and outside your organization? The answer, in this case, is most likely to be a resounding yes.

For the past seven years, I have asked these two questions to thousands of managers and leaders from around the world in my executive education classes at MIT Sloan School of Management. With the first question, few raise their hands — even when the group comprises senior leaders. But when I ask about their capacity to set a new tone or mindset in their organizations, virtually everyone feels it’s within their scope and mandate, and the hands fly up in the air.

Why not bring about culture change by challenging leaders to adopt a new mindset that shows tangible progress toward achieving what is perceived by most to be the more elusive goal? What would that look like in practice? Suppose you are the leader of the retail division of a 170-year-old bank with a deeply risk-averse culture. The following passage, based on a real-life example, illustrates how to challenge your leadership to adopt a new mindset:

“We’re losing business to our upstart competitors. Our customers think we are too slow and unimaginative. I think we can do much, much better. If I have been clipping your wings, then that’s on me, and I want you to tell us at the leadership-team level what we can do to change how we operate. Let’s start changing how we’ve been working with our customers and clients. Enhancing customer value has been central to our core purpose for a long time. Let’s rededicate ourselves to that mission.

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Topics

Future of Leadership in the Digital Economy

Digitalization and other critical factors are transforming what it means to be a great leader in a new environment. Discover the cultural and strategic shifts organizations must embrace to prepare their leaders to succeed.

IN COLLABORATION WITH

Cognizant
See All Articles in This Section

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Comment (1)
LANKE AWOMAILO
How do one cope with toxic leadership who does not want new mindsets