Leading Teams Through Digital Disruption!

Leading teams in the digital age demands a complete refashioning. Now is the time when leaders need to look through a different lens, push people to break out of their silos, and step outside the comfort zone to adapt to unprecedented times. But most importantly, leaders should first learn to lead themselves, set an example, and prioritize compassion, resilience, trust and empathy.


If there’s a skill, leaders can’t make peace with in the current era of disruption, it’s the potential to navigate unpredictability. In a VUCAD world, following the old-school course to leadership won’t bear fruits. Instead, leadership that brings people together, while staying grounded will make a real impact.

As organizations get in shape for the digital era, new-age leadership behaviors become paramount. Leaders need to equip themselves with leadership styles that fit varied environments- remote, in-person, or custom hybrid.

Times are tough. People are jumpy. Riding out the storm is difficult. There is really no going back to normalcy.

So, what should leaders do despite all the turmoil swirling around?

Shift From Titles to Mindsets-

The digital transformation has led to an upheaval of the command-and-control style of leadership. Changing times requires leaders to be team builders. It’s not about frontlines or C-suites, in particular, but people and culture, at scale.

How leaders invest, prioritize, communicate and empathize with their people has an incredible bearing on the resilience of their leadership. These turbulent times have thrown up opportunities for leaders who show up, value their best talent and help them reach their maximum potential. To effectively lead a team in the digital age, leaders shouldn’t limit themselves or their team to legacy working practices, instead, they should be open to new ideas.

Leaders have to move from an authoritative to an empowering style of leadership. They should be able to trust their teams and value individual efforts. To successfully navigate the new environment, leaders need to pivot from “problems” to “repairs”, “challenges” to “improvements”, and “fear” to “opportunities”.- That’s about incorporating a growth mindset! The desire to go the extra mile, without fearing repercussions will help leaders stand out in the digital world.

Lead Teams with Compassion-

Face-to-face or screen-to-screen, compassionate leadership is the key when it comes to leading teams in the digital age! Leaders ought to exercise extra care, be easy, model vulnerability, and do whatever it takes to support their team members. Leading teams with compassion in a dispersed workforce can act as an immediate game-changer to drive productivity, and performance.

Leaders need to create an environment of relief where everyone is open to sharing their imperfections without being slammed. Amid pressing times, leaders must enable their people to voice ideas. An environment where weaknesses are appreciated can help foster trust and eventually lead to a positive transformation.

Get Comfortable with Uncertainty-

Accepting change and having the passion to move forward is one key trait leaders must arm themselves with. In the digital environment, there is nothing one could plan for or do, other than accept reality! Which means leaders need to build a mindset that acknowledges the truth and works towards achieving their goals. They should be able to unite with their team and look for solutions that help them navigate the new normal.

Leaders need to have a mindset that treats the digital revolution as an opportunity and not a menace. But even more so, leaders need to constantly find ways to upskill, adapt to changing conditions, and step up. The attitude to constantly keep pushing forward without being overwhelmed is what leaders need in the digital realm.

Upskill and Speak the Language of Today’s Era-

Because of the speedy digitalization, it’s almost unavoidable for leaders to stay more relevant in the new era of work. That’s where upskilling becomes a necessity. A learning culture must be instilled in organizations and driven with a bottom-up approach. Leaders should have the zeal to unlearn, relearn and cascade that further to the organization that- “if we can upskill, you can too”.

As per McKinsey Global Institute, “By 2030, more than 375 million workers globally will have to master fresh skills as their current roles evolve as a result of automation and technological advances.”

The digital disruption is geared to revolutionize workplaces in the coming years and leaders with strong digital know-how will find themselves fueling innovation, productivity, and growth.

Considering the challenges posed by the fast-evolving ecosystem, experiential learning is becoming more effective. To stay competitive, leaders must invest in developmental courses that help them transition into a new leadership with ease. At KNOLSKAPE, we help leaders become future-ready in the context of their business. Learn more here!

Set an Example-

The new-age leadership isn’t about what leaders know but how they act. The workplace, now more than ever, needs leaders who guide their team by behaviors and not by words alone. The modern workforce looks up to leaders who mirror their actions. Thus, it becomes imperative for leaders to practice what they preach.

When leaders lead by example, team morale soars, leading to increased productivity. Employees start envisioning their leaders as trusted mentors. On the contrary, when leaders don’t set an example, teams struggle to perform, churn rate increases, trust is diminished, and so on. Leading by example proves what leaders say and what they do, go hand in hand.

Communicate Business Goals Clearly-

This is the time when leaders need to pause, look at the big picture, and reevaluate their business values. The pandemic shook the business ecosystem. Things that worked earlier, aren’t feasible anymore. The digital age requires leaders to design strategies that align with the new normal. Several organizations have already started implementing sustainable reforms, and therefore leaders should also not hesitate to adapt to innovative strategies that will help them survive in the foreseeable future. Leaders who want to stick around need to focus on mindset, people, and culture more than tech.

Leading Teams in Changing Times Needs a Complete Makeover- Are You Ready?

For most leaders, leading teams through digital disruption has been one of the major stumbling blocks. So much has happened in the past two years. And as we continue to experience the negative effects in the wake of 3rd wave, it’s time to prioritize well-being and create a psychologically safe workplace that keeps the line of communication open, at all costs.

Aside from having meaningful conversations with employees, leaders must invest in core upskilling and encourage employees to test new methods. The importance of diversity, inclusion, and equality must also not be understated.

Now is the time when leaders need to look through a different lens, push people to break out of their silos, and step outside the comfort zone to adapt to unprecedented times. But most importantly, leaders should first learn to lead themselves. They must develop strong self-awareness and commit to their goals!

We hope this blog resonates with leaders who are still discovering answers to how to lead a team at workorhow to lead and motivate teams through change?

Interested in knowing how KNOLSKAPE helps leaders thrive in the digital arena?

Please do not hesitate to contact us!

Originally published at https://knolskape.com on February 1, 2022.




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