The Top 6 Leadership Challenges Around the World
What’s most challenging about leading organizations today? And do these leadership challenges differ around the world?
Our researchers went straight to the source to answer these questions about leadership challenges, gathering input from 763 middle- and executive-level leaders in organizations from China/Hong Kong, Egypt, India, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the U.S.A., and Spain.
Our study found that leaders around the globe consistently face the same 6 challenges — even if they describe their leadership challenges and specific context in different ways.
So what are the top leadership challenges?
1. Honing Effectiveness: the challenge of developing the relevant skills — such as time-management, prioritization, strategic thinking, decision-making, and getting up to speed with the job — to be more effective at work.
2. Inspiring Others: the challenge of inspiring or motivating others to ensure they’re satisfied with their jobs and working smarter.
3. Developing Employees: the challenge of developing others, including mentoring and coaching.
4. Leading a Team: the challenge of team-building, team development, and team management. Specific leadership challenges include how to instill pride, how to provide support, how to lead a big team, and what to do when taking over a new team.
5. Guiding Change: the challenge of managing, mobilizing, understanding, and leading change. Guiding change includes knowing how to mitigate consequences, overcome resistance to change, and deal with employees’ reactions to change.
6. Managing Stakeholders: the challenge of managing relationships, politics, and image. These leadership challenges include gaining managerial support, managing up, and getting buy-in from other departments, groups, or individuals.
Knowing that these leadership challenges are common experiences for middle and senior managers is helpful, both to the leaders and to those charged with their development, according to our researchers.
Individuals can benefit from knowing their experiences aren’t isolated, and can feel more confident reaching out to others for help facing these challenges.
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