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The Top 5 Leadership Trends for 2019

As 2019 is quickly approaching, and the role of a business leader today is complex and challenging, but ultimately rewarding. Here, we cover the top 5 trends you should pay attention to in 2019. 

1. Embrace work-life blend

Have you heard? Balance is out and the blend is in. Instead of viewing work and life as a balancing act, Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos said that it's more productive to view them as two integrated parts. "It actually is a circle. It's not a balance." Bezos said. The relationship between our work life and personal life is reciprocal, and we no longer need to compartmentalize them into two competing time constraints.

 

2. Promote Continuous Education

Recently, we’ve seen upskilling and retraining programs emerge in organizations across the globe. Companies are taking the time to help their employees learn new skills as new technologies emerge. As the business landscape continues to grow faster than ever before, it's becoming increasingly important that every team member becomes smarter.

 

Continuous learning should be at the forefront of management's agenda to gain and sustain a competitive advantage. Furthermore, learning will not be confined to formal training and education, but can be anything from micro-learning sessions to conferences and mentoring. 

 

3. Make company culture a priority 

Many of the business leaders we meet with and have at our conferences talk about the well-known Peter Drucker quote that says, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." People talk a lot about culture, but often the energy they expend talking about culture far exceed the time they spend actually doing anything about it. 

 

Regardless of whether your company has ten or 10,000 employees, making company culture a true business priority for your organization is vital. If you haven't already, take the time this year to make your culture a core part of your business strategy. Your candidates, employees, and investors will thank you for it.

 4. Elevate and retain female leaders

One of the major leadership and management issues for 2019 should involve efforts to elevate and retain female leaders. At our previous conference, President Barack Obama took the stage and said, "Companies with a critical mass of women in leadership perform better, are more profitable, have higher stock valuations. If you are on the board of a company and you look around and it is all a bunch of men, you have got a problem. You are not well organized to succeed." 

 

An examination of the leadership in the Fortune 500 companies reveals that only 4.8% of CEOs are women. A 2015 McKinsey report revealed that companies with more gender diversity among leadership saw greater financial gains. 

 

5. Lead by actions and example

In the past, leaders have gotten away with vocally supporting policies and procedures, but their actions have said otherwise. That tide will turn in 2019. With so much light being shed on unacceptable behavior in all workplaces, leaders will begin to understand they need to not only hold their teams accountable for proper behavior, but hold themselves accountable as well.

 

Interested in reading more about leadership trends? We interviewed one of the world's most sought-after thought leaders in digital society: Check out the full interview here.