How to Use Technology to Meaningfully Enhance Your Leadership
In the modern workplace, leadership development is a key area that many businesses are willing to invest in. In just the United States alone, billions of dollars are spent annually on learning and development (L&D) for both current and future leaders. Many training and coaching endeavors include in-person conferences and workshops, with the hopes of inspiring new leadership skills and capabilities within C-suite leaders, high-level executives, and other high-potential employees.
However, choosing to spend these billions of dollars solely on in-person workshops and trainings may not be giving organizations as much bang for their buck as they might hope. Recent studies have found that adults participating in a lecture-style setting of learning may forget almost 50% of what they learn – and that’s within the first two weeks.
In addition to the challenge of retaining valuable information designed to enhance leadership capabilities, a survey by the Korn Ferry Institute found that 62% of business leaders are reporting that they still experience leadership gaps, with only 17% of leaders feeling confident that they have the leadership capabilities to fully deliver on strategic priorities.
To truly invest in – and increase – the human capital of your organization, it’s time to listen to Millennials and utilize the overarching power of technology within the workplace.
In our guide to the Top 10 HR Predictions for 2017, we outline that the focus on human performance and wellbeing will become a vital part of leadership development, also noting that digital HR and learning solutions will make the L&D experience more engaging and compelling. But how, exactly, can technology be used to sustain quality leadership skills and capabilities of executives and future leaders, while empowering them to continue learning even when the in-person leadership training is over?
Pair In-Person Leadership Training With Continuous Online Learning
To be clear: integrating technology into both your professional and personal leadership training doesn’t mean that in-person workshops and trainings should be ignored. These are high-value, informative, and motivational components of quality leadership training strategies that shouldn’t be overlooked. This is why East Tenth Group delivers customizable, in person, one-on-one leadership development paired with technology delivery to drive leadership skill development both on and offline.
However, with the volume of content that is absorbed everyday by high-potential employees and leaders alike, it can be tough to retain the information gained from in-person training, and to sustain those learned skills moving forward. With countless meetings, high-stress environments, and the other factors that make up the everyday life of a CEO or executive, business leaders need accessible and relevant content resources which allow them to access and refer back to what they’ve learned.
Modern agencies have caught onto this trend, and are utilizing current technologies to the fullest to enhance their L&D programs. Not only do online L&D resources help the modern leader flourish and scale their leadership capabilities, but they help large-scale organizations cut training costs while simultaneously increasing employee learning outside of the workshop.
According to Bersin by Deloitte, future-forward HR technologies are working to curate an engaging online L&D environment, helping leadership learners learn new skills on a consistent basis through self-directed learning on platforms like LinkedIn Learning, Oracle, and Saba.
There are a wide variety of useful Web 2.0 tools designed to help leaders retain information while maintaining an active presence within the workplace, including:
Online Instructional Tools: These software tools are designed to share high-level content with a targeted end user, with modules and trainings available in an online location which is accessible to leaders anytime.
Media Sharing Platforms: Platforms such as Youtube may not immediately come to mind when thinking of high-quality leadership training, but these online environments are the perfect place to store and share relevant, informational, and engaging videos. From presentations from respected business leaders to short-form animated content, these value-filled platforms allow for quick sharing of high-quality content.
According to HubSpot, 55% of people consume video content regularly. Furthermore, 59% of executives agree that if both video and text are available on one topic, they’re more likely to choose the video-based content.
Web Conferences: With web conferencing methods, business leaders can take part in live trainings, meetings, and presentations without leaving their office. This allows for a presenter to reach a wide range of viewers, while participants can actively participate in the conference by asking questions and answering poll questions. Click here to access ETG’s growing library of webcasts and videos for some superb examples.
Podcasts: Podcast-based leadership learning means that business leaders can access high-quality content on-the-go. Trainings and presentations can be recorded and shared on an accessible platform, so that leaders can listen back while commuting, on the bus, or during a quiet part of the workday. Plenty of high-level business leaders regularly share their valuable insights and tips, helping you effectively retain information that will help you increase your leadership skills.
Effective continuous online learning is diverse, accessible, and stimulating. When you choose to use available online resources to hone in on developing a specific skill, you can do so in a way that keeps you engaged and stimulated when the time is right for you. By pairing our one-on-one, customizable leadership development with technology-based learning, leaders can access new skills with unparalleled ease.
Use Technology to Build Meaningful Connections and Enhance EI Skills
Social media platforms are not only for casual or personal relationships – they’re tools for building powerful interpersonal skills while finding professional connections and gathering valuable knowledge.
By maintaining an active presence on these online communities (such as LinkedIn), you can participate in online training events, listen in on leadership webinars, share your knowledge with like-minded and future-forward leaders, and catch up on the latest industry-related articles.
Likewise, virtual simulations and virtual reality (VR) training sessions are quickly becoming a trend within high-level organizations, including enterprise-level businesses such as WalMart.
These sessions and simulations can increase engagement and increase Emotional Intelligence (EI) so that leaders can better retain and transfer their learned skills into real-life workplace environments, while having a safe environment to practice newly-learned skills. So, although these high-cost and high-tech simulations can be expensive, they are of low cost when considered from a cost-per-person perspective.
Technology to Optimize Your Leadership State of Mind
Not only can effective technology use enhance your leadership capabilities, it can enhance your mental well-being, allowing you to reach new heights as an effective leader. Wearable devices, such as a smartwatch, or other health-monitoring apps allow you to monitor aspects of your health such as your heartrate, the steps you take every day, and even the amount of time you spend on your feet.
Studies demonstrate that an increase in your physical fitness contributes to your mental well-being, as well as providing other valuable cognitive benefits such as:
- Enhanced creativity
- Faster learning
- A sharper memory
- Prolonged mental stamina
- Lower stress levels
Exercise allows you to perform better as a leader, working to foster interpersonal connections and collaborations. As your mood can directly affect that of others within your team, investing in a wearable device that motivates you to move and take care of yourself can help you be better, and do better.
Using a wearable device throughout the day can help you reach the mental competency necessary to effectively lead your team.
No matter the industry, it can take several years to build digital maturity within your leadership training. However, a study completed by the MIT Center for Digital Business shows that the level of digital intensity gained by a company helps them manage more volume with the same physical capacity, including driving 16% more revenue with both their human and physical assets.
As a C-suite leader or other high-level executive, it’s time to level-up your leadership capabilities with the proper utilization of technology throughout your day. Whether you’re attempting to boost your KPI’s, or simply want to increase engagement with your colleagues and target market, technology can help you streamline your leadership strategy to boost your overall performance.
To fully immerse yourself in enhancing your leadership capabilities, keep in mind that it’s a balance of in-person coaching and development sessions and technological resources that will enhance your leadership capabilities. When you learn new skills while and leverage technology to help you retain and embrace this new information, you can become the future-forward leader and set the tone for your organization.
At East Tenth Group, we offer high-value, one-on-one leadership development, optimized to your specific business circumstances. Amplified by a robust content library stocked-full with webcasts, videos, ebooks, and insightful articles, our boutique consulting team is available to help your business reach new heights.
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As the CEO & Founder of East Tenth Group, Michelle leverages 25 years of business and experience as a strategic advisor and executive coach to help drive actionable people solutions and provide practical insights on business strategy to senior leaders. she and her team and are fiercely committed to the development and growth of people and companies because we believe that when people thrive, business thrives.