Next Economy Leadership Code: 6 Timeless Leadership Principles

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The leadership code

The Next Economy will be driven by 10 key emerging technologies, which are being deployed at scale by GAFA (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon) and Microsoft; among others.

This is a new world, where you’re either a digital business or a dead business; and requires a different type of leadership.

It’s not about simply copying what they’re doing, it’s about leading differently. Today’s leaders, still operating by industrial era dogma, must embrace new leadership principles. How different is the leader of the future from yesterday and today’s leaders?

The leader of the future is highly emotionally intelligent, is purpose driven, embraces diversity and collaboration, is fiercely and impatiently optimistic, has a learn-it-all mindset, and is entrepreneurial minded.

Are you developing and recruiting these leadership qualities in your organization?

A few months ago I listed a few ideas on my own leadership style, below I add an additional 6 timeless leadership principles that are relevant today:

1. Shape the future

Most leaders are perfectly satisfied maintaining the status quo, but staying in the same lane is the main cause their companies fail: they miss the future. Leading for innovation is different. It’s not about waiting for someone else to define the future for you, but rather you embracing the unknown and blazing a trail.

You don’t predict the future, you create it.

2. Make things happen

Leaders understand that execution is everything, and make things happen through others. It doesn’t matter what type of business you are in, you won’t get far if you don’t trust the talent and judgment of others.

Remember, leadership is about enabling the full potential in others; make it happen.

3. Engage today’s talent and develop them for tomorrow

The threat and opportunity of automation requires that people reskill, that is add and develop new skills that drive the organization’s capabilities. To do so, leaders must inspire them to keep learning and developing while at work but also outside of work.

To enable the exploration and creation of tomorrow, leaders create the conditions for others to be great, they embrace bottom up innovation; giving people a safe space experimentation.

4. Practice extreme collaboration

Innovate or die. Well innovation doesn’t happen without collaboration, that means collaborating internally and externally. Don’t be afraid to bring the outside in to help you shift your perspective. Leaders that want to move with both speed and velocity need to practice extreme collaboration; it’s no longer a nice to have skill.

5. Build the next organization

Innovative leaders are ambidextrous, they embrace the dual challenge of keeping the core business running while also exploring the future. This means they manage for today and lead for the future by exploiting their core business while also finding the next revolution.

6. Invest in yourself

The best leaders are learners; they never stop learning. Learn better to lead better.


Leading in the Next Economy brings a different set of challenges, leaders have to reset their beliefs and adjust. How will you lead your organization in the Next Economy?

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