5 essential skills for post-COVID leadership

5 essential skills for post-COVID leadership


COVID-19 left its mark around the world, impacting all of our personal and professional lives somehow or other. Now, as businesses continue to return to normal activity — while managing the repercussions of the pandemic — it’s critical for leaders to recognise and implement the skills needed in the post-COVID workplace.

Leadership skills in today’s workplace
Considering every business has its own unique challenges and needs, the post-COVID workplace may look different from company to company. However, as people managers, like ourselves, work to adjust our skill sets to organisational needs accordingly, there are a few key competencies that will prove essential to navigating the modern and future workplace successfully.

The five skills leaders need for the future include:

  • Problem-solving: Organisational leaders are managing instability and frequent adjustments — in an increasingly remote world. As a result, problem-solving capabilities have become essential for employers and managers working to ensure challenges are managed efficiently and organisational transitions are seamless. Enhanced problem-solving skills help leaders approach issues calmly and methodically to come up with a solution that will lead to the best results.
  • Communication: As the saying goes, “communication is key,” and it’s never been more important than in today’s post-COVID workplace. Providing consistent and clear communication throughout uncertainty and change will be a linchpin in fostering greater engagement, motivation and collaboration. According to a report from Pumble, 86% of employees and executives cite the lack of effective collaboration and communication as the main causes of workplace failures. This further emphasises the importance of sufficient communication from us as business leaders to drive organisational performance and productivity.
  • Emotional intelligence: Emotional intelligence is ultimately the cornerstone of great leadership. In fact, a 2020 survey for entrepreneurs found that more than 95% of respondents believed that EQ in leadership was more important than IQ. Leaders with high levels of empathy are better able to listen, communicate and engage with their team members — which ultimately inspires long-term trust and confidence. This inevitably produces collaborative environments and helps leaders get the most out of their teams.
  • Time management: Workplace change is continuous and common. Consequently, leaders are faced with numerous demands in their incredibly limited time. To stay effective in such a fast-paced environment, leaders today need excellent time-management skills for a better understanding of where their time is best spent and how they can be more efficient along the way. This might include establishing personal deadlines, ensuring all meetings have a purpose, adjusting priorities when needed and more.
  • Agility: While businesses continue to navigate uncertainty across industries, leaders need the ability to make swift and informed decisions. Developing agility and resilience skills helps leaders increase their ability to adapt in complex, quickly changing environments — increasing their likelihood to see more options, engage employees and stakeholders and make more informed decisions.
A business manager helps a businesswoman working at her deskLeaders with high levels of empathy are better able to listen, communicate and engage with their team members

Training solutions to elevate your post-COVID leadership
As a result of COVID-19, organisations have been fraught with instability — and business leaders have been left to face this fallout. However, with the right leadership skills at their disposal in a post-COVID world, team leaders are better equipped to manage and overcome these challenges effectively.

Adequate training can be an incredibly valuable way to help business leaders, and those aspiring to be promoted, hone the skills needed to be more successful leaders in today’s workplace — and ICML can help. Learn more about our essential leadership skills course or contact us to discuss more training options.

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