Are you enough of a leader to outsmart AI? It’s a question everyone should be asking in this 2023 world of fast-moving AI and robotics, where the job market and how we all work is going to change so significantly for many professionals.
Anyone who’s met me knows I bang on a lot—a lot!—about self-leadership and my belief that you can’t be a leader of others until you’re a leader of self. How as a leader you can create change within yourself and in any organisation or business. Friends joke if I was ever to get a tattoo, you wouldn’t want to bet against it being around self-leadership.
So, it was fascinating to look back on the research done by McKinsey & Company in 2021 defining the skills citizens will need in the future world of work.
The global research group narrowed it down to four: cognitive, communications, digital—and self-leadership.
Turns out you can’t replace self-leadership with AI!
My belief is that anyone can be a leader. You don’t need a title. You need to be able to think of yourself as the leader of you then operate in a way that is aligned with your values, the legacy you want to leave, and what you want to create for the future. But there are many people who aren’t thinking of themselves as leaders and feel weird about it. They really need to change their lens on this, especially because of the McKinsey supporting evidence.
It’s time to start thinking like a leader.
That doesn’t mean overtly leading from the front or feeling like you have to be on a stage or be the loudest voice in the room. It’s just understanding how you can position yourself in a way that is aligned with whatever it is you’re wanting to create for yourself and the future.
How do you want to be known? Do you want to be known as beige or known for what you’re really good at? If it’s the latter, if you want to make an impact in your own life and for others, it’s time to work out how you can authentically use your voice to position yourself really well for what’s to come. You need to be able to demonstrate your expertise through your actions to position yourself really effectively, to be leading yourself through life.
This is not a moment in history to be waiting for someone else to lead you through things. It’s time to see the opportunity, step forward and go with it. It seems obvious to even say that, but in my experience a lot of people wait to be told what they’re good at and that they might be suited for something. They put the responsibility on others for their future. It won’t fly with AI—you need to have the vision and ambition to adapt to translate your skills across industries if needed.
Need extra incentive? Here’s four reasons why self-leadership will be essential in the future:
- Adaptability. To thrive in a future of rapid tech advancements, changing economic landscapes and evolving social dynamics, people will need to be adaptable and flexible. Leaders of self, anticipate and embrace change, learn new skills and adjust their mindset to align with changing circumstances.
- Autonomy. As traditional organisational structures shift and remote work stays prevalent, people will have increased independence. Self-leadership means people can take ownership of their work, make autonomous decisions and set their own goals which will lead to productivity and performance. Tick!
- Resilience: It’s a fair bet the future will be awash with challenges, setbacks and failures. Leaders of self have the mental strength to bounce back from tough times and are able to take responsibility for their actions and outcomes, which cultivates a great growth mindset.
- Emotional intelligence: Understanding your own emotions and motivations is a mark of leaders of self. The future will demand strong interpersonal skills and the ability to navigate complex relationships, so leaders with empathy and effective communication will be vital for building successful collaborations and managing diverse teams.
Time to use your initiative more. Step up. Stop waiting.
Flip the switch in your mind and think of your two best attributes and how you can use them as leverage for where you want to be. Clues: it will be the things you get good feedback on, the work you feel proud of, what people rely on you for and what comes easily to you.
If you would like help, please reach out and let’s chat. This a specialty in my wheelhouse and I’d love to help you sooner rather than later.