January 30, 2023 in Articles

2023 Leadership Development Trends

As we continue into 2023, it’s essential to keep an eye on leadership trends that are most likely to have the most significant impact on organizations in the next year. Implementing these trends can positively affect your company, especially if you’re struggling with developing a cohesive vision across teams. 

Communication Among Departments

It’s been decades in the making, but we finally see a movement away from silos toward a more even structure that promotes collaboration and communication between departments. 

While you might suspect this to be an evident trend, it isn’t. There’s long been a prominent barrier between various departments that haven’t seen the need to communicate with one another outside of an occasional question or inquiry.

For instance, the Finance department might communicate with Operations to get some critical numbers for forecasts, but there probably wasn’t much conversation outside of that. 

Today’s leaders are finding reasons to encourage communication among departments. You’ll find much more discussions among top leaders of the technology, human resources, accounting, and operations teams. Managers are finding that the conversations and knowledge gleaned from them help improve processes and develop solutions to pressing problems.

Developing Leaders from Within

Organizations are discovering that it’s much more effective (and cheaper) to develop the managers of tomorrow from their existing workforce. Rather than seeking help from outside executive agencies and staffing companies, they’re choosing to build leadership skills in high-performing employees who show aptitude and interest.

Employees take their carefully cultivated knowledge with them whenever they leave to seek more significant opportunities at other organizations. The people who take their place face a learning block that takes months or years to overcome. Once they obtain the knowledge necessary to perform their job well, some leave for better positions, resulting in a continuous hiring cycle. 

It’s much more efficient to grow your existing talent and allow them to take on more significant roles of responsibility over time. Leaders can mentor their employees and encourage those interested in future management positions to learn the soft skills necessary, like public speaking and interpersonal communication.

Balance Developing Hard Skills and Soft Skills

Good managers often find their way to the top ranks through their hard skills. For instance, someone taking on the CTO role might have a history of strong technical performance and knowledge of many programming languages. 

However, anyone can develop hard skills. It takes time and effort, but it’s completely manageable if the individual puts the work in. Whether it’s by taking courses or earning a new certification, employees can further their knowledge of necessary hard skills.

Soft skills are a lot harder to cultivate. While some people naturally build their soft skills over time, others must take courses, read books, and participate in workshops to create them. 

Leaders see the importance of soft skills and encourage their workforce to learn them, just as they would enable them to develop their technical skills. Employees aren’t the only ones to work on their soft skills; managers are as well.

Experiential Learning vs. Social-Based Learning

There’s a trend toward balancing the two main types of learning processes: experiential learning and social-based learning. In experiential learning, people learn from experiences, whether that includes reading a book or simply performing a new task repetitively.

In social-based learning, people with different backgrounds and experiences collaborate to solve specific issues. Rather than turning to an instructor for assistance, they rely on out-of-the-box thinking and communication to solve problems.

Both methods have their benefits. Experiential learning is appropriate for individuals seeking to learn a specific new skill, while social-based education can help organizations find resolutions to particular issues. Social-based learning can occur within teams or across entire departments.

Companies that employ both strategies find significant advantages. On the one hand, they build up the individual skill sets of their workforce, while on the other, they encourage communication and collaboration among their teams.

Get Help Developing the Leadership Capabilities of Your Team

At Relevant Movement, we believe in strengthening the skills of current and future leaders. We offer a range of solutions and programs that can help you realize your hidden leadership skills. Contact us to schedule an appointment today to learn more about our coaching, assessments, and programs.