Executives are the decisive factor for the success of change processes. However, not only the environment, but also the demands on the management of employees are changing ever faster.
How to lead when planning fails?
The term VUKA describes the field of action in which companies operate today. Managers have to deal with volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. We accompany many of our clients through digitization and transformation processes. Our experience shows that four strengths in particular lead to success in dynamic environments.
These qualities should be focused in management development in 2019:
- Active networking: Close exchange and cooperation across hierarchical, departmental and spatial boundaries are becoming increasingly important. Managers must actively seek dialogue.
- Openness: Acceptance of the changed, volatile framework conditions creates the willingness to question supposedly safe, familiar paths. This also includes giving employees more freedom and personal responsibility.
- Participation: As a result of digitalization, corporate information is becoming increasingly transparent at all levels. This makes it easier for managers to involve employees in decisions. Building mutual trust is the prerequisite and task of team leadership.
- Agility: The further development of the company must be constantly evaluated and the path taken continuously optimized. The reaction speed and adaptability of an organization increase when employees make their own decisions.
Executives must not only promote technological change, but above all also align the organisational form and mentality of the teams. The efficiency of your management team is increased by the following measures:
- Rethinking the organization of cooperation with the goal of quick reactions, high flexibility and increased innovative power. The manager must create the framework conditions, e.g. through cross-functional teams or a new leadership model with temporary project management.
- Ensuring communication through a lived information culture. Information must be made available transparently across all hierarchies, and this is the aim of stand-up meetings, for example.
- The targeted use of management instruments that promote agile work: Mutual trust is the basis for a constructive error culture, a transparent information culture and a target-oriented feedback culture.
- Strengthening innovative strength by promoting a team culture that enables innovation in everyday life. Interdisciplinary networked communication and collaboration, the transparent presentation of information and knowledge, the giving of trust and room for decision, as well as the creation of experimental possibilities are decisive.
Agile leadership – what matters?
The agile leadership style is not a method, but the attitude of a manager to promote agility in the company. The aim is to support employees in reacting quickly and flexibly to changes.
Development takes place on three levels: processes, structure and culture. Leaders and teams need to adapt their roles, learn new skills and realign their way of working and attitudes. The manager’s tasks are to support the team, offer himself as a coach and remove obstacles. This means in detail:
- to hand over responsibility
- to create the framework conditions for agile work
- to be guided by the results (not by the processes)
- to promote the strengths of the employees
- build trust
- to live a constructive culture of error
- to ensure transparency in the information culture