What Does the Leader of the Future Look Like Term Paper

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Future Leader

What does the leader of the future look like?

New and distinctive challenges for leader face?

What does a blueprint for dynamic planning look like?

Competencies and Future Decision-Making

What disciplines or areas must the new leader focus on?

What lessons have past leadership behaviors taught us?

What type of leadership will the current and next generation look for?

Executive Leader Competencies and Crisis Consequences

Scientific Management paradigm influence

Network-Centric paradigm influence

Current and Future Decision-Making and Variable Influences

What does the leader of the future look like?

As the world approaches 2015-2025, leaders can expect rampant change and complexity along with inevitable crises that each change could bring (Modis, 2003).Modis suggested that at the present complexity growth rate "... [by] the year 2025 we would be witnessing the equivalent of all the major milestones of the twentieth-century[i.e. electricity, automobile, DNA structure described, nuclear energy, WWII, space travel, Internet, human genome sequencing] in less than a week" (p. 31). In the paper the researcher attempts to explore the challenges future leaders will be facing. As it is being said that current leadership styles like scientific management will not be able to cope with the period where everyday new technologies are being introduced. This paper discusses the challenges, expected competencies and capabilities needed for future leaders.

New and distinctive challenges for leader face?

Gandossy and Sonnenfeld (2004) posited poor ethical decisions can subvert a business or a whole economy into recession. Drury and Kitsopoulos (2005) and Sample (2002) proposed that unethical military decisions can turn neutral populations into enemy sympathizers or worse. Business and military executive leaders aspire to improve crisis decision-making after improprieties have jeopardized organizations. As it is being said that in the 2015-2025 timeframe, crises confronting business and military executive leaders will likely increase in magnitude and frequency while time available to resolve will decrease. This will be the one great challenge future leaders will be facing. As they will have to made critical decisions within a limited time frame.

In the future, executives will have a greater responsibility and accountability to stakeholders and shareholders to improve consequences when crises arise. Future leaders should be willing to learn and demonstrate competencies required to confront familiar and unfamiliar crises.

What does a blueprint for dynamic planning look like?

Competencies and Future Decision-Making

Considering future challenges and future needs of organization strategies can be developed for future leaders. One suggestion is as Allen (2000) suggested that the military has a history of deriving required competencies from expected missions and strategies. The military derives competencies or mission essential tasks using the Strategy-to-Task method or competency-based programming. Strategy-to-Task is a favored method suggested by many scholars because this analysis forms directly associated mission strategies with competencies. The Strategy-to-Task method was a Scientific Management reduction theory that examined current and near future emission settings for explicit, critical tasks. Strategy-to-Task assessed a leader's ability to train to acceptable standards and identify which tasks were achievable. Tasks that were not achievable by the leader encouraged new skills creation (CJCS). So this method should be included in the curriculum for leadership and management coursed for future leaders.

Further mid and executive level military and business training can capitalize on a different approach to competency development. That is leaders and trainers can collaborate with local universities and higher education institutions to develop essential competency development programs based on functional needs like technology applicability or management. Business and academia can work together to determine knowledge, skills, or abilities needed to be understood by students based on corporate enterprise needs and core business practices in the future.

There is much research (Rogers, 2003) about change, change management, and technology change that suggested a need for continuously creating new leader competencies as systems and technology advanced. The leaders of future should develop these competencies to manage change and to handle new coming technology and its impacts on organization and markets.

Another important task is to train future leader as Bracken (2008) proposed one scenario-based analysis which helps to forecast future technology needs. Using future scenarios, we can train and develop required competencies for future staff and soldier-level.

What disciplines or areas must the new leader focus on?

There are many suggestions on which are the specific areas that the future leaders must focus. Palus (2003) advocated 21st century leaders, whether military or business, should think about the future to plan for the general public's needs. Bracken (2008) encouraged executives to consider futuristic worst case scenarios and case studies to frame executive thinking and decision-making. Others suggested executives continuously observe to collect natural or human-induced event indicators that may indicate a potential crisis.

So it is suggested that leaders should demonstrate knowledge, skills, and abilities required to scan, understand, predict, and resolve issues before problems and crises occur. Business leaders should display skill to adapt to competition, to re establish market share, and to ensure the company's survival. Shareholders should expect leaders to set and achieve goals that foster business solvency. Similarly military leaders should exhibit the competencies that contribute to making wars brief as Heinze indicated citizens expected wars to achieve national objectives while minimizing casualties, a serious demand on leader competencies

As Executive Leaders are in a very distinct position in an organization and they can motivate entire organizations to quickly adapt to crises and achieve high-risk goals. So it is important for the future leader to develop vision and strategy, and encourage performance that achieves long-term success in an organization. Drury and Kitsopoulos (2005) suggested a leader is obliged to become familiar with future crises and to willingly confront crises. So this is suggested that executive leaders must train junior leaders in essential leader competencies even if the resources to do so are small.

What lessons have past leadership behaviors taught us?

Previous research has pointed out many shortcomings and deficiencies in the past leadership behaviors. For instance Nutt (2004) stated that executive decision-makers have often made poor choices when lacking proper knowledge, skills, or abilities. Leader choices can lead to disastrous events, subsequent crises, and unintended consequences, but poor outcomes can be avoided or mitigated by key competencies. Bate & Johnston Jr., (2005) and Denning (2007) suggested Scientific Management was untimely, non-responsive, less agile, and narrowly-scoped in its functional approach. Leadership competencies were focused on accuracy, precision, and efficiencies within a function rather than on agility, effectiveness, or transparency to environmental stimuli.

Similarly P. Denning pointed out that executive leaders avoided chaotic problems and disruptive change. Leaders ignored critical problems because the problems were too difficult to solve or too costly for known technology. These are the lessons for future leaders. In the future, executive leaders will be expected to identify problems that could lead to crisis and take action to reduce risks to organizations.

What type of leadership will the current and next generation look for?

Reed, Bullis, Collins, and Paparone (2004) proposed that in the 21st century, the general public will demand responsive solutions to more complex problems than in the20th century. In the past, business and military leaders confronted systematic problems, which if solved, guaranteed business profits or military victories but with the emergence of Network-Centric leadership, a new competency set began to emerge to achieve agility and effective world-view when approaching crisis. Moffat (2003) and Smith (2002) theorized the Network-Centric Paradigm was emerging though researchers had not focused on 2015-2025 crises and competencies. So the current and future leadership look for a network-centric model in which leader is able to manage the crisis and will have to make quick decisions.

The transformation from Scientific Management to Network-Centric influence helps to explain the history of the decision-making phenomenon and crisis, competency, and consequence variables. Scientific Management was the dominant influence on decision-making in the Industrial and Machine Ages while Network-Centric (General Systems Theory) emerged as the dominant influence in Information and Knowledge Ages. Researcher like Bass, Avolio, Jung, & Berson, (2003); and Mitroff (2004) inferred that during the later stages of 1941-2001 timeframe, there was a developing conflict between the two paradigms. So it is suggested that a typical crisis might have both systematic and chaotic problems to be resolved. In the past that systematic-oriented problems were most readily solved by Scientific Management methods. While adaptive-oriented problems were more readily solved by adaptive Network-Centric methods. As long as crisis problem solving involved systematic and chaotic situations, executive leader decision making would utilize both Scientific Management and Network-Centric approaches.

Network-Centric paradigm influence

In the early 1990s, executive leaders were influenced by technology diffusion and globalization trends. Many business and some military leaders were beginning to use advanced computer technology that could communicate data and information within networks. Meyer (2001) proposed information networks would speed the flow of data and information to everyone connected to networks and empower teams in diverse organizations to work together. While functional Scientific Management organizations that had been limited to only vertical information flow within their organizations could now communicate with other organizations at all levels. A gradual shift…[continue]

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