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Leisure, travel, charity events, social gatherings; the Island’s business community with their suits off. FUTURE WORKS: Leading In A Digital World The penultimate Future Works event (the third instalment of a planned four-part series) was entitled ‘Leading In A Digital World’ and held at Tanner’s Loft in 1886 Bar in Douglas. The event was led by international key speaker, Steven Cockram, co-founder of GiANT Worldwide, author of The 100X Leader, and consultant to top-level executives and leaders the world over. T he theme focused on the transitional challenges faced by a move into the Digital Age and was designed to be interactive, exposing attendees to practical visual tools that would help people benchmark their current reality and health, and how they could invest in themselves and the people they lead. A prevalent topic within Steve›s address was the shift in people›s expectations of what a workplace should be, and the tremors that digitisation is sending through traditional workplaces along with changing ideas about how they function. Until relatively recently, the fundamental skills needed to lead an organisation and become a leader had barely changed over the course of the 20th century; any employee wishing to climb the hierarchy and advance in their career simply had to accumulate enough experience and expertise in their job to be promoted to management level. Once in the position of leader, it is no surprise that top-down management practices were held as the gold standard. After all, if promotions take place solely due to years of experience and knowledge, it would be fair to assume that leaders would be expected to be omniscient and responsible for telling their team how to do their jobs. “This says all we need to know about traditionally ‘good’ leadership skills,” said Steve. “Either you must have enough knowledge and experience of the business area you lead that you can dictate to your team or the ability to manage upwards.” In the Digital Age, people no longer want to be managed they need to be enabled, with active cultivation in their professional growth. Edicts and directives are no longer the correct tools for this job: “Leaders are having to learn to lead through influence more than positional power. By 2025, 60% of the workforce will be made up of millennials who want a coach or mentor, not a boss,” explained Steve. He added: “They want someone who is committed to developing them to help them fulfil their potential. Traditional leadership qualities are changing, and leaders in the Digital Age need to harness new skills, such as emotional intelligence and relational connectivity. “To lead in this new Digital World requires a new set of skills and competencies. Leaders must be comfortable not being omniscient, but know what questions to ask of their team so they can trial and error solutions. Leaders must focus on ensuring their teams understand the fundamentals, but that they are more than happy for them to figure out the process, supporting and influencing them through coaching. “Leaders must build influence and persuasion through integration and inclusion, sharing work in progress and inviting input. And – most of all – leaders must have the digital fluency to leverage workforce engagement.” The event ended with a short question and answer session, with the audience looking to clarify on points raised during the talk. On leading teams, Steve had one final thought to share: “If a confident leader is liberating those on their team, then the atmosphere of that team is one of empowerment and progression. Conversely, if there’s a manager who tends to dominate those they lead, then they are creating a culture of fear and manipulation. “Ultimately, a workforce wants to be engaged, but instead will be compliant to do what it takes to keep their jobs and protect themselves and each other.” The Future Works series is brought to you by recruitment agency Search and Select, and Global Life Assurance business Zurich International, and is organised by Tromode- based performance marketing agency, Bold Consultancy. The next Future Works event will be held in January or February. To register to attend Survival Skills for Future-proofing Recruitment: Retaining and reskilling workers for the future visit futureworksim.eventbrite.com To find the talent you need contact Search and Select on 678144, email the team at recruitment@searchandselect.com or visit www.searchandselect.com | 45