“Fewer people, who identify as managers, have post-school qualifications than most other occupation groups, and this has not been improving overtime to any great extent.”
Peter Gahan, Founding Director, Centre for Workplace Leadership
Through the Productivity Commission’s report into Workplace Bullying the government found the gap of leadership competencies required to lead organisations successfully in the 21st century. The report found an organisation’s executive and management is promoted on the basis of technical skills or knowledge rather than their interpersonal and leadership capabilities. They found that leadership directly influences the toxicity levels in workplace culture, which in turn impacts on employee commitment and financial performance.
In June 2013, the government announced the Centre for Workplace Leadership, which will research positive workplace culture, employee engagement and the skills and strategies needed for better leadership. Gahan states that productivity slowdown is affecting “most if not all industrialised economies”; A change will require fresh insights into doing business. This will require smarter management who is able to redevelop their relationship with employees, suppliers and other stakeholders.
The great news is that evidence is already available. This evidence builds a compelling case on how leaders influence their business. Through the research by Richard Barrett we know that
- Levels of toxicity in workplace culture impacts on employee engagement (slides 37-43, 56-59) and on financial performance (slides 5-12, 60-61) with the best places to work outperforming others 4 to 1.
- Organisations are most productive and innovative when they meet employee’s needs (slides 13-35)
- Reducing toxicity levels in organisations starts with personal development (slides 62-64)
- Leaders who lead with purpose, values and authenticity create the best workplace cultures (slides 48-53)
With change accelerating, it is no wonder that so many businesses are facing difficulties. The leadership and management of the past no longer suffice for today. Problems surface on a range of issues from staff absenteeism, staff turnover and talent sourcing, to difficulties tapping into new markets, lack of innovation, or customer satisfaction.
There is a need for urgency. Leaders must realise what maintaining the status quo will do to them and their organisation. Postponing or a lack of decision making, in the hope the problem will go away, was ok in a slower more stable time. But not now!
With the state of leadership in this country, becoming an authentic leader is a clear advantage. If you want to capitalise personally and professionally this means more development, not less, even when you reach your professional aspirations. But it means leaving the comfort zone behind and taking a leap into a new adventure. Take heart from the smallest members of our society, who constantly self-develop and persevere (video 1:30).
Start your journey to authentic leadership today and complete a free 5 minute Personal Values Assessment (report sent to you in 10 minutes)