3 Cs of effective leadership
Singaporeans need to learn leadership skills to remain viable in the workplace despite technological disruptions
No matter the technological disruptions of tomorrow, one skill remains sought-after - leadership.
Singapore workers, in particular, must learn influencer skills because tech overhauls will hit them the hardest among their Asean peers.
About one-fifth of Singapore's full-time equivalent workforce (21 per cent) will have their jobs displaced by 2028. This compares with 13 per cent for Vietnam and 7 per cent for Malaysia, for instance.
The findings were from a study on the impact of artificial intelligence on workers in Asean.
Carried out by technology leader Cisco and economic forecasting agency Oxford Economics, the results were released during the World Economic Forum on Asean held in Hanoi in September.
Singapore's powering ahead with digital transformations, such as in robotics, also means a greater displacement of production workers, the study said.
What is needed for Singapore workers?
"The majority of new job opportunities in Singapore are likely to be created in highly skilled managerial and professional roles, reflecting the growth areas of the economy.
Thus, a considerable uplift is required in the overall skills composition of (the) workforce," the study added.
BEING A LEADER
Leadership is not something you think about. It is something you do.
For instance, it is easy to watch a video about how to influence others.
It is more challenging to convince a team that you have just met in class to go with your idea.
Ironically, for all remote-learning benefits that mobile and online disruptions bring, they cannot teach trailblazing aptitudes.
That is because being a leader requires human connections. It is a face-to-face thing.
It involves three Cs - consciousness, care and contentment - that no phone or online course can impart.
Be the professional who is fully conscious of yourself and others.
Learn to act rather than react to situations.
Firstly, be self-aware.
For instance, instead of rolling your eyes or shutting down when a colleague challenges the data you have been carefully compiling for a month, take a moment to consider that an alternative route may be possible.
Act on the findings - do not react to it.
Second, be aware of others. For instance, having a textbook answer about what you might do in a finger-pointing situation is not the same as having the empathy needed to calm a heated meeting.
For example, say a top employee threatens to quit unless you address the problem at hand.
You have to be able to act on the issue (what is bothering him) rather than react to feelings (his anger).
True leaders care about their people and connect with them in actions - not mere words.
It is easy to say you appreciate your factory manager and another to show up at the start of his 4am shift, shake his hand and tell him why you value his contribution to the business.
Care is about clearing your calendar for an afternoon because you want to be with an employee or a colleague who has just received tragic news.
No amount of mental gymnastics in a simulation game can teach you how to show the right care at the moment of need.
Be happy for a colleague whose work is singled out for praise rather than envy him for it.
Or, if you are the boss, be the one who inspires your subordinates to yield good outcomes rather than the one who inflicts angst to grind out results.
When a significant contribution is made, be contented with it and commend the good results. This way, you manage your stress and that of those around you.
Your appreciation or contentment creates a connection with a peer or staff member.
No emoji or social media posting has the visceral impact of a leader who celebrates someone else's achievement or rests in achieved targets.
This article was contributed by Right Management (www.rightmanagement.sg), the global career experts within US-listed HR consulting firm, ManpowerGroup.