Leadership - in a World Surrounded by Technology
Leadership really doesn't have a gender type. Leadership is what it is - a skill that one possess that enables them to guide others through a process. Effective leadership simple means you have inspired others. You've created a path that lead to success, and celebrated the accomplishments with those who followed your vision.
Now lead with technology
Our technologically filled work days tend to be more self motivated, less verbally communicative, and often isolated. The computer has taken the brainstorming and research processes to a whole new level. You simply have to key in certain sets of data, and volila you have a bundle of information delivered to your computer screen.
Not everything on your computer screen is worthy of reading. Maybe the computer or office lab, isn't that efficient an environment just yet. Technology still needs leaders to direct the paths, streamline the methods, and encourage creativity in the workforce.
Would we still be modern day workers if we didn't have technology?
Unlike computers, people are not made out of cookie cutter molds. This article is not about cultural fit, its about people and teams of people in the digital age. Actually this article is just the opposite of the cookie cutter mold scenario. It's about leading people through the process of using technology as a tool to meet the objectives and goals within their working spheres. As well, a lot of people work from home, so cultural fit really isn't an objective of human resources (HR) in the technological sense.
You are a number however
Each trained professional comes with varying skill levels and aptitudes, and the ingenuity to get things done. But computers can be unforgiving, even to the best of employees. You make a mistake on a computer it logs it, deep down in the memory banks of the forbidden zone. Every trained professional makes mistakes. How you lead those individuals and/or teams of people back out of those forbidden zones - says everything about you as a technological leader.
Weather you are leading a team of IT professionals, software developers, graphic designers, or media managers - all creative in their own genre of expertise,you're still the leader. The idea of leading a team of innovative minds such as those listed above is a rewarding thought to many. To others, the task would be daunting, without the proper skills.
Meetings - What we Used to do in the Day
Video Conferencing is quite different than attending a meeting in person. The mindsets tend to be different. No one likes meetings. They can and often do stiffen creativity from your best employees. Meetings can be used as a weapon to hold people at bay too.
Video conferencing is a nice meeting tool, but a tiring old tool when it comes to delivering on the side of goals. It's just another meeting forum. Video conferencing equipment doesn't necessarily make you look smarter because you have one hanging on your wall, or sitting on your desk. Especially considering that most high school seniors can chat up their friends on their cell phones and process images, documents and video before you even dial into the system.
It may be helpful if you have people in remote locations, but not as a tool in a single office building. Use your video conferencing sparingly, and let your workers do their jobs. Be the owl - not the vulture.
Who are these IT people?
Your IT departments know their job well. When they make a video call to fix your connections- that's considered work, it's not a meeting. Don't devalue their work - or YOU won't work. You are a user on the system, they are the professionals.
Technological Leadership is a new phenomenon
A strong technological leader has to know which type of meeting will fit the needs of each of his or her department's, be it onsite or remote. They have to adapt to each team, and be able to offer input and collaboration without killing the creativity that is needed to move forward any goals. Here are some examples of the shifts in leadership roles as they relate to technology:
- How many MBA's are terrible with math? I would say a lot! How many MBA's need a computer to accomplish their daily tasks? They aren't the leaders in technology, they are the followers. They may have a good working knowledge of technology, but do they know what gigaflops are?
- A nurse is good at handling the latest mobile and tablet technology, but do they know what a vector graphic is? Why would they need that, and how is it integrated with the programs on their devices?
- Teachers are good with developing curriculum for their students. Some can even master the art of instructional programs that help them create online courses. But do they know how that fiber optic cable works? Why do they need it?
- Administrators are good at meetings. They are suppose to lead departments managers, yet they generally don't know what to do when they have got in the way of managers doing their jobs. Managers need guidance just like anyone else in order to do their jobs, plus they need the correct computer equipment to perform business tasks, etc . Most administrators are not technologically as savvy as they lead others to believe. Do they know How to Fire Yourself ?
We live in a world that is so reliant on computers, that many people would have a hard time doing their jobs without those leaders in the IT industries. Give some respect where respect is due. Without technology, most of the modern day jobs WOULD NOT be so modern.
Addicted to Meetings
Maybe not necessary for this article, but I still wanted to list the guru of all meeting processes. There is the software method of development SCRUM (an Agile process for completing complex processes) if you really want to get into a meeting frenzy, then SCRUM's your tool. SCRUM is a long process that has its place, but not in every technical area. SCRUM is meeting overkill, but it works in its own environment of software development.