According to entrepreneur.com approximately 30 percent of today’s businesses will not exist in a meaningful way in a decade and on top of that, I have personally witnessed many large businesses failing to thrive. This is because, today's leaders either have an outdated skill set or that they suffer from a bad mindset.
So, what’s this got to do with lots of businesses going out of business? It turns out, EVERYTHING!
Immoral leadership is not the only result of hard power motives. So is stupidity.
Mckinsey & Company’s research on corporate performance gives six reasons for a steady slide of established enterprises as they try to compete with newer and more nimble competitors.
- Resistance to the transformation necessary to succeed in a new economy. The new economy is driven by the digital revolution of business models, innovation, customer acquisition and engagement, and organisational processes and structure.
- Businesses that are organised as silos are internally competitive, rigid and change-resistant. Business agility requires both internal and external talent to be organised as networks, yet few leaders know how to lead talent networks.
- 90% of capital budgets of large companies are spent on old initiatives.
- Legacy systems, processes and products are huge roadblocks to new value creation and working relationships.
- New competitors can use the latest technological advantages to create and hyper scale customer value and convenience at very little cost. (e.g. Uber, Amazon, Airbnb, Etsy, etc.)
- Public companies that are driven by quarterly profitability cannot compete with venture-backed startups that are willing to over-invest to disrupt the market.
So, are you open to a radical solution? One that will shake up and wake up your leadership?
Solution - Appreciate women.
Most companies already have untapped leadership resources who have the contextual, operational, relational and empathetic intelligence (CORE talent) that, according to brain science, is ideally suited to excel in hyper-competitive environments requiring constant adaptation.
This CORE talent exist in most women.
Scientific evidence of over 100 validated studies, including ones from the McKinsey Global Institute, demonstrate that female brains are designed to better deal with complexity.
According to Daniel Goleman, most male brains are typically designed for efficiency. They love shortcuts, simplicity, speed and decisiveness. It’s easier to control the short-term than trying to influence the long-term. In business this can easily lead to the common hard power error that speed and continuous cost reductions are a strategy rather than acts of desperation.
The unprecedented challenges of our age are ideally suited to the CORE talent designed into women’s brains. They are:
- Contextual Intelligence: Is the ability to continuously align short-term goals into the long-term big picture. It’s the intuitive capacity to “see” the interactive effects of multiple decisions in complex circumstances.
- Operational Intelligence: Is the holistic thinking ability to predict the time, talent and resources necessary to execute a project, improve the process, or develop a solution.
- Relational Intelligence: Is the ability to systematically improve group intelligence by carefully including diverse points of view and resolving competing priorities.
- Empathetic Intelligence: Women are much more likely to create positive innovation that enhances customer’s lives because they have more vivid empathetic imaginations than most hard power leaders. This creates a stream of genuine, positive innovations rather than fake ones.
In the war for talent what is so easy to overlook is that, according to Gallup, more than 67% of women are disengaged in their work because they feel unheard and undervalued. If businesses really want to create a competitive advantage, they need to unravel the invisible biases that disable women and help create an agile, SMART Power culture. It will require a revolution, a change of mindset but it is absolutely necessary if businesses want to thrive in a new world full of unexpected technologies and unseen competitors.
It is not impossible or too late to change. Many hard power leaders have adjust their behaviour to act SMARTER and create a mind shift that changes cultures. And a creative, SMART Power culture is the only way to constantly ignite innovation and deliver on promises that matter in our wild new world.
The three basic paradigms of leadership power explained:
- Hard Power, the willful drive to get immediate, self-enhancing results.
- Soft Power, is driven by empathy and collaborative skills to maintain high functioning relationships.
- SMART Power, blends soft power collaboration with the goal achieving energy of hard power to create genuine human benefits.
Put simply, a SMART Power leader is inspired to create a river of value to their people (employees), customers (community) and investors (risk takers) whilst respecting our planet.