Leaders need to be comfortable with discomfort, build meaningful relationships within and outside the company, adapt authentically, and aspire to be on a global career path
Indian organizations are struggling to find the right leadership talent. But what does right talent need to look like? Are we able to engage and retain them? Do we understand their challenges?
A new research report by US-based leadership development organization, the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) and Indian School of Business, Developing Next-Generation Indian Business Leaders: The Keys to Success, captures how organizations in India can develop a robust leadership pipeline with a global mindset, while honouring what is best and unique about India. The report was released in New Delhi by CCL chief executive officer and president John Ryan, who is a retired US Navy Vice Admiral. Ryan was superintendent (president) of the US Naval Academy. Prior to that he was a former pilot in the navy where he commanded squadrons, wings and forces in Asia, Europe and the Middle East during a 35-year career in the military. Ryan believes that India stands out in terms of its leaders as they are versatile, adaptable and “persist like the dickens”.
According to him, “there is no one India and there is no one Indian leader”. The next-generation Indian leaders need to move away from hierarchical structures and wear five “hats” to overcome challenges the context or environment presents. According to the report, the five hats describe leadership capabilities needed to execute current strategies and drive future success.
Cultivators of self
Next-gen Indian leaders need to develop their ability to energize, and to unlearn and relearn. Being a senior leader means having the passion for work, people and the organization. Next-gen Indian leaders will not only need to generate positive energy within themselves, they will also need to be “energy multipliers”, generating positive energy in and among their colleagues, customers and stakeholders.
Next-gen Indian leaders will need to unlearn certain beliefs, skills, or knowledge that is no longer helpful. They will also need to relearn based on new information, emerging trends and personal experiences. Relearning will require these leaders to demonstrate a willingness to take risks and move out of their comfort zone. Having and displaying confidence is a critical factor in the ability to unlearn and relearn. A senior Indian business leader, who wasn’t named, explained in the report, “I think there will be a complete change in whatever learning that I have just gone through in the next 10 years, so I will have to unlearn and relearn again.”