Saturday, January 16, 2016

Three Traits to Bridge Digital and Global Leadership Gaps

A wide leader does not just follow but discover the path.

We are at the age of digital dawn, now the physical barriers can no longer be the walls to separate people from communicating and sharing knowledge and insight, are we on the way to recognize the best of the best, or simply blend the variety of perspectives into the new ideas and solutions, and more critically, what are emergent traits to bridge global leadership gaps, and develop the new generation of digital leaders and managers who can gain respect, win hearts and minds not just locally, but globally?

From in-depth knowledge to abstract wisdom: Knowledge can be defined as the capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc. At digital age, knowledge life cycle is significantly shortened, it means today’s digital leaders MUST be life learner with cognitive agility and profundity of understanding. Knowledge is power, today’s leaders need to have expertise in their own professions to practice knowledge power more persuasively, and connect the minds more intelligently. As an old saying: learning STEM well, you can live in the world without fear. Believe or not, the hard knowledge can melt the culture barriers at a certain degree. Even going beyond, today’s global leaders should have abstract wisdom. Statistically, there are roughly 6500 languages in the world and there are about 4200 religions around the globe, being a multilinguistic is definitely helpful to improve culture-cognition, but it’s still limited to capture the holistic picture of human society. And the challenge is to unify, not divide, therefore, abstract wisdom can bridge differences because at a higher level as many times abstraction enables agreement. You must communicate, communicate and then communicate and understand that not all of the associates will move through the change curve at the same speed. Just because you have arrived at the other side does not mean everyone else has. Take proposed approach from abstraction to elaboration...A wide leader does not just follow but discover the path. All of the different approaches are out there to suit different minds to learn. Wisdom is the application of knowledge suitable to the time and situation, to be wise you need all the knowledge you can get if there is enough, and then capture insight and foresight from it. Wisdom is not knowledge; one cannot have wisdom without knowledge, but one cannot substitute wisdom for knowledge as well.

From heart-feeling compassion to mind-connecting empathy: Heart feeling compassion is important to feed the hunger and help the helpless...But mind-connect empathy will help to identify the root causes of many man-made calamities and advance human society via understanding and harmony. Empathy is the power of understanding and imaginatively entering into another person's feelings; or the intellectual identification with or vicarious experience of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. Empathy means using the right language with the right people. Nothing in the world, in business or in life, is black and white. It could be hinting at another important skill for great leaders, which is respecting other people as if you were in their position. It means the thoughtfulness of not only knowing what to say, what not to say, also how to say, and when to say it. Digital is the age with increasingly more complex and pressing problem-situations, embedded in interconnected systems operating in dynamically changing environments. In addressing these problem situations and working with their relevant systems, we have learned to recognize the limitations of the perspectives, methods, and tools of the traditional scientific orientation. Every serious problem we face today as a species has been caused by human dysfunction or destructiveness. And human dysfunction and destructiveness are caused by the interaction of hidden (intangible and invisible) human affective, cognitive, imaginative and connotative functions and content. In other words, the wrong focus, the wrong values, the wrong assumptions, the wrong means. Framing the new mind to see the ever changing world via the multi-dimensional lenses, empathy is absolutely one of the most critical elements of digital leadership, it means an open mind to understand how others think and value; it means proactively gaining cognizance of your environment and adapt to it means thoughtfulness, intelligence, and influence in positive ways.

From Creativity flow to innovation fine-tuning: Creativity has emerged as one of the top leadership qualities. Global leadership is shifting toward grooming historic digital leadership skills embodying effective communication in networks of global conversations that inspires creativity in diverse domains of expertise. Creative leaders are futuristic and forward thinking. Realizing that what has worked in the past isn't today's best solution and having the vision to see what it has now become. Creative leaders are the ones who are capable of predicting future trends, manage the presence and delegate the past. In each context, a creative leader is always conscious of the changes needed to connect the past with the future, prospecting and communicating tangible such as resources and intangible such as cultural changes needs and identifying the proper vision for each cycle in the life of a corporation. Creative leaders are adaptable, flexible enough to adapt to the situation and the players involved. It means doing unexpected, unconventional things or methods to connect with your team, organization or beyond--whatever it takes to get the job done, done well and leaving everyone feeling good about it. The more "creative leaders" we have, the better for the world. The proper function, the ultimate criterion of "creative leadership," is the ability to create more leaders, to spread leadership, to bridge leadership gaps, and inspire creativity - or, more precisely, to groom "followers" (the people for whom one is responsible) into leaders. Stated differently, "creative leadership" is the ability to develop the people for whom one is responsible into leaders in their own right.

If leadership is influence and discipline, then digital and global leadership is a ‘meta-influence” and trans-disciplinary practice, from culture empathy to intelligence; from respect to empowerment, from creativity to inspiration, it is not only about art and science of leadership; but also about the attitude, altitude, and aptitude; the breadth, depth, and height of leadership authenticity. The substance of leadership will never change, it is about the direction to change, the vision to make the positive influence, the dedication to contribute, and the creativity to do things differently, in order to lead your organization and the world forward.


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