7 Leadership Trends for 2021

  • A key part of positive work cultures is a sense of community.
  • Make sure you allow the team to rest when they need it.
  • A leader can inspire loyalty by being fair more than they can by wielding their power aggressively.

In business, leadership is everything. Recruiting a team of experts for your team is easy, but guiding them to complete a task isn’t. You’re not dealing with tools or software, which means a strict and stubborn approach won’t do you any good. To achieve success in business, you must be a true leader. The problem is, achieving this is as difficult as it sounds.

However, there are many ways to improve your leadership skills and manage your team through a business endeavour. Let’s look at a few leadership trends for 2021 and how you can apply them to your management.

A good leader should always strive towards creating a positive culture in the workplace.

Building a positive work culture

A good leader should always strive towards creating a positive culture in the workplace. A toxic work environment can affect both employee morale and productivity. If employees don’t feel valued, or they feel that they’re just a cog in a machine, they’re more likely to lose motivation. This is why the businesses leaders of today emphasize the importance of valuing your employees and treating them like family.

A key part of positive work cultures is a sense of community. Your team members should feel like they’re part of a real team. A good rule of thumb is not to pit employees against each other. While a healthy dose of competitiveness is great for some lines of work, others don’t benefit as much. If employees are competing for certain benefits or a job prospect, it’s likely that some resentment will start building up. This can impact teamwork and cooperation significantly.

If you’re in an office, encourage employees to personalize their workspace so that they feel more at home. It can help motivate employees, as they won’t have to see the same monotonous and unchanging desk every single day.

Prioritizing wellbeing

The mental and physical wellbeing of your employees affects everything from productivity to workplace morale. It should be your top priority whenever you decide to implement changes that could affect employees.

Make sure you allow the team to rest when they need it. If a worker calls in sick, it’s better to trust them on their word than to risk infecting everyone else. When there’s a busy day, don’t push employees too hard. If they burn out, they won’t be productive, and they’ll end up resenting you. Introduce changes that help employees stay fit and healthy. It will help them with motivation and make the workplace a healthier environment.

An organization needs to be healthy at all levels to succeed. Keep this in mind when creating a leadership strategy.

Adopting a change-happy mindset

Businesses need to evolve to survive in today’s dynamic and unpredictable market. A leader must recognize when it’s time to introduce some changes, whether they’re caused by external or internal pressure. A company that doesn’t change is more likely to fall behind compared to the competition that evolves.

It can be difficult to accept change in the chaotic environment that we call business. This is why it’s important to think opportunistically. How can a particular change benefit your business? What angle can you play to get the best of sudden changes? Even if there’s an unforeseen circumstance that impacts your business negatively, you can most likely turn it in your favour, or mitigate issues that come with it.

Rethinking the established workflow

There’s more than one way to run an office. The global pandemic taught us this lesson first hand, without pulling any punches. When there’s an opportunity to improve workflow, you should grab it immediately.

Many offices have moved from a strict and old-fashioned system of workflow to something more modern. Some have accepted remote work as a default, as it removes commutes and allows for more free time for employees. Others have experimented with four-day work weeks with ten-hour workdays.

It’s important to recognize when this type of change can impact the business positively. If there’s no need for employees to be present at the office, switching to a remote system would improve morale and reduce the costs of running an office.

Eradicating bad leadership styles

Leaders should use their powers wisely and avoid taking advantage of their position for unnecessary actions. Employees shouldn’t feel like they’re under the reign of a despot. A leader can inspire loyalty by being fair more than they can by wielding their power aggressively.

Many beginner entrepreneurs don’t realize that they’re leaning towards authoritarian leadership. It’s an easy mistake to make when you’re starting out. Pressuring employees to do more than they can is a good way to foster a negative work environment. Holding a grudge when criticized is another common error. Both employer and employee seek to improve the business, as it benefits both. Welcome constructive criticism and encourage it among your employees. It will help you improve as a leader, and it might lead to some new insights into the mentality of your team.

An organization needs to be healthy at all levels to succeed. Keep this in mind when creating a leadership strategy.

Establishing healthy communication

In business, there’s nothing more important than communication. Whether you’re talking to your boss or your employees, you need to be able to get ideas and concepts across.

There’s a lot to be learned from asking questions. Encourage employees to come to you with any dilemmas or issues they have with work. Sometimes, problems can be right under your nose, and you might require outside input to notice them. A good leader listens and then formulates a plan of action.

It’s important to establish communication channels with every member of your team to get a good perspective. This is especially important for remote employees, as they are often neglected. You might not notice that they have issues until it starts affecting their work.

To improve the sense of community and bring remote employees up to speed, you should set up regular virtual meetings. With the right video conferencing platform and a good strategy, you’ll be able to communicate with remote employees and make them feel more like they’re part of a team. With a larger number of employees, consider setting up more complex conferences with Q&A services and networking options. It would help employees connect and cooperate after a meeting.

Taking a stand on social issues

Image plays a huge role in today’s business strategies. You can’t shy away from every single non-business-related topic and try to reach out to people at the same time. Customers want to know where your business stands with certain issues before they form their opinion.

The ethical aspect of consumption is being brought up more than ever before. It’s important to discuss environmental topics in the open. If your company produces something, people will want to know if it’s recyclable and whether the production process is environmentally-friendly.

Take a firm stance when it comes to popular discussions. There are plenty of worthy causes that you can voice your opinion on. Everyone can get on board with improving communities and providing them with things like food, shelter, and education. While the support for certain causes might be implied, it’s crucial that you show good leadership and emphasize your company’s role when it comes to particular causes.

Conclusion

Leading a business is no simple task. You must show your employees that you’re willing to compromise, while also being the firm hand that leads them. It’s a delicate balance that requires knowledge and experience. To avoid making the same mistakes as other entrepreneurs did, you should follow some of the above pointers. You won’t be a perfect leader after a single day, but you’ll get there more quickly if you know where to start.

Neil White

A lifestyle journalist from Sydney.

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