10 Realities Of The Modern Business Leader

Stepping into and prospering as a leader has never been an easy ride. These days I truly believe that the demands on the modern business leader are huge. So what are 10 realities of the modern business leader?

  1. Having ‘leader’ in your job title does not make you a leader. If you are going to be a leader you need followers. Seniority or status no longer brings followers; you have to earn the right.
  2. Loyalties are different. There was a time when people joined and stayed with an organisation for the long term. Now with continued mergers, acquisition and greater mobility, people change jobs more. As a result they might not have the same level of loyalty.
  3. People want to be involved. There may have been a time when you could issue instructions and people would do what you asked. These days, people want to be involved.
  4. Bad news travels fast. 24 hour media and social networking means bad news quickly becomes viral, which puts a huge strain on leaders and leadership teams.
  5. It’s a balancing act. Leaders are asked to create long term strategy and success. On the other hand they are judged on the short term results. The challenge is to balance long term success and short term results.
  6. Multiple stakeholders with different expectations mean that it is a continuous juggling act. You need to respond to the different stakeholder expectations, some of which can be conflicting.
  7. Greater regulation means there are many considerations to take into account. From employment, to advertising, to accounting, to money laundering, health and safety and corporate social responsibility, to name just a few.
  8. Geographically dispersed operations present many challenges. There is the obvious one of time difference but challenges around cultural issues too.
  9. Innovations come like a tidal wave with organisations seeking to get one step ahead of the rest. The challenge is to make the right choices.
  10. The rewards are high but so are the risks. When we hear about the rewards packages of senior people they can often seem like they are huge. At the same time there is a fair degree of risk, especially for those at the very top of the organisation.

The Bottom Line: Being a leader is demanding, rewarding and challenging in the modern business world and achieving success is a long term project.

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 7,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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