Tuesday, January 7, 2020

The Board of Directors’ New Year Prediction, Perception, and Practice

The New Year is a great time to predict, perceive, and practice in order to drive transformative change for improving leadership maturity at the board level.

Organizations become more complex due to the accelerating speed of changes; nonlinear connectivity, the exponential growth of information, and fierce competition. Digital transformation is an ongoing journey with the updated management philosophy and practices.

The digital board is diversified, cognitive, proactive, and instrumental. The BoD role sets the top leadership tone for progression and affects most through cohesive communication, congruent behavior, and continuous endorsement of the change to keep the momentum.

New Year is the perfect time for digital corporate board leaders to predict, perceive and practice the better ways of leading transformative changes and amplify their leadership influence.

Prediction: Corporate board directors as senior leaders need to make their new year prediction and keep gaining the digital awareness, ask themselves and others: What are the emerging trends from industrial, technological or economic perspectives? What resources do you need to be successful? What needs to be done? How promptly the organization can respond to the tides of changes, grasp the opportunities and manage risks to make the business stand out as the digital master? How will you measure success? Etc.

The digital ecosystem with all aggregates challenges and opportunities propels organizations further towards the challenges with faster speed. The spirit comes from the top. Digital board leaders should advocate progressive changes, envision upcoming trends, propose new ideas, generate conviction and enthusiasm for the future of the business.

The new breed of BoD as the directorial role should be able to think outside the box, bring a fresh view to pinpoint the possible blind spots and improve leadership maturity. They can create a future scenario that provides a picture of the future from which they may “back-cast” to discover what decisions may be required at each stage in order to shape a clear vision. Foresight with a scenario development is actually an ongoing conversation that you keep engaging in for steering the organization in the right direction.

Perception: Perception is an interpretation based on your own conditioning, insight, surroundings, experiences, leading you to make a sound judgment. There are perception gaps existing which cause leadership blind spots and poor decision-making. Thus, digital leaders need to be cautious of their perceptual bias. Perception is sometimes a false reality. The out-of-date perception is like the glue that keeps you still while the rest of the world moves on which creates another problem-resentment. To lead effectively, digital leaders like board directors today must remove the “old box” shaped via conventional wisdom or group thinking, think more critically, independently and in an out-of-box way.

As the senior leadership team, the corporate board’s perception matters because it affects how you are going to respond to “what happened,” and which leadership influence you would make. The leadership challenge to build a world-class corporate board is about how to fill blindspots, bridge perception gaps by adopting mindsets of not knowing, challenging convention, maximizing diversity and being willing to experiment, as a basis for then being able to think differently, independently, and globally. Thus, the corporate board composition needs to embrace cognitive differences, functional differences, and other experience/capability/background/education differences. When the collective perception is closer to the perception of the mastermind with a high level of cognitive maturity, human society can accelerate collective progress.

: To lead transformational change, digital board leaders need to develop the best and next practices for improving leadership maturity by disrupting existing management norms and rejuvenating the culture of innovation. Organizations today are the business system with a mixed bag of old and new, solid and fluid, physical and virtual. To make a leap of the digital maturity of the organization, it’s critical to disrupting the outdated mindsets, systems, processes, cultures, business models, or practices in order to bridge the perception gap. Digital BoDs who can laser focus on using energy and resources strategically, have better chances to figure out the “secret sauce” of directorship, to make amplified leadership influence and achieve the progressive outcome.

Corporate boards play crucial roles in practicing governance disciplines. Good governance must create good performance, especially for business growth in the long run. It is a matter of leadership guidance to steer the journey of digital transformation in the right direction by facilitating continuous digital dialogues and enforcing communication effectiveness effortlessly. The corporate board-driven digital dialog needs to be continuous, iterative, interactive, and multi-channel because change occurs on a continuum.

The New Year is a great time to predict, perceive, and practice in order to drive transformative change for improving leadership maturity at the board level. The corporate board directors should present an in-depth knowledge about the business and expertise in multiple domains. So, they can see things from different angles and provide invaluable feedback to business management teams for steering digital transformation in the right direction and make the transformative change with a steadfast speed.


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