As the world evolves, transformative changes are constantly underway in today’s workplace. The weight of this shift has fallen on the shoulders of those holding leadership positions in the global market. As a result, management in the 21st century is diametrically different from what it used to be. And with exponential growth in almost every realm of operations, the gaps between old and new modules of organization are only getting wider. Consequently, the challenges of a rapidly changing and dynamic global market call for an entirely new skill set.
To truly succeed in the modern framework, executives need to revisit their approach to management to meet the changing market needs. This requires acquiring a vast variety of both operational as well as soft skills. To that end, top management institutions are stepping up to the challenge, and consciously and continuously remodelling their pedagogic approach to achieve this end. A top tier B-school like IILM prepares us to be ready for unforeseen challenges of the ever-changing society, market, and workplace.
The Changing World, Workplace & Workforce
As the world grows smaller, the functions of a manager grow bigger. Consider the fact that until recently, the reigns of management were in the hands of baby boomers. Today, Generation X and Y have taken over to dominate the market. For an executive, this means managing a multi-generational workforce. For managers both old and young, this means adopting a liberal mentality that accommodates the thoughts, beliefs, and ideals of multiple generations, and carefully and deliberately being able to tackle these gaps.
At an international level, as globalisation persists, the larger, global marketplace affects every organisation, be it in terms of changing economic trends, trade policies, labour markets, or what have you. Being aware of and being able to understand and critically analyse the global outlook is integral to the role of a modern manager. Today’s executives need more complex strategies in order to engage with the world’s changing ways. And as workforces are becoming increasingly cross-cultural, managers need to develop the required responsiveness, empathy and cultural skills to manage a culturally diverse team, clients and other parties.
As for the workplace, traditional 9-5 jobs have already long since been making way for more flexible and dynamic trends. Flexible work environments have been proven to improve productivity, morale, and effectiveness. Besides, as more youngsters enter the workforce, the demand for a dynamic workplace is constantly on the rise. Managers can expect more freelancers, part-time employees, and contractors, while making room for a relatively flexible, yet effective physical and virtual environment. Beyond that, it’s important to consider that workforces today are judged on completely different metrics. Problem-solving abilities, innovation, creative thinking, organisational behaviour, and many such values are gaining more attention. Management institutions like IILM will equip executives to evaluate performance based on such metrics.
A Pressing Need to Develop New Competencies
With these changes, organisations are looking at not only reviewing and modifying, but also diversifying the roles and skills of managers. Given the complex nature of today’s marketplace, managers are taking on more dynamic and powerful roles. What is required of a manager today might not simply be stated in the job description; they require a diverse and dynamic set of competencies that go above and beyond the traditional roles of a formal managerial position.
What are some of the ‘new’ competencies required for the modern day manager? Upgrading technical know-how, manage multi-generational teams, working with cross-cultural clients/teams, adapting to and fostering less hierarchical and more flat organisational structures, facilitating and guiding a team rather than traditional ‘direction’ & ‘dictation’ approaches, emerging as leaders, not just managers, adopting empowering managerial styles and more.
The Rising Importance & Responsibility of Educational Institutions
As a result of the emerging changes and challenges faced by 21st century managers, there is a growing need for a new agenda in management training and education. Revered management institutions like IILM are rising to the occasion by offering comprehensive curricula that go beyond textbook learning to encompass a spectrum of hard and soft skills necessary to succeed in today’s changing market. Bearing the responsibility of not only nurturing a new generation of managers, but upgrading the skill set of present managers, it is on the backs of such institutions and educators that a new era of management will shine today, and in the years to come.