7 Skills Every Future-Ready Leader Needs | Top Universities

7 Skills Every Future-Ready Leader Needs

By Stephanie Lukins

Updated Updated

Sponsored by Thunderbird School of Global Management

Although the future may look like it’s full of robots and artificial intelligence (it isn’t), the reality of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is that the most successful businesses, nonprofits and governments will be led by highly skilled individuals who can understand and accommodate the demands of an increasingly connected, informed and fast-moving world.

Let’s take a closer look at the seven key skills every future-ready leader is going to need if they want to succeed…

Technological intelligence

In 2020, being tech-savvy goes beyond having a basic understanding of today’s technologies and what they do. From analytical reasoning to artificial intelligence, cloud computing to UX development, you’re going to need to know how best to exploit these technologies and utilize them in ways that leverage the best chances for success in business.

This is why Thunderbird School of Global Management’s focus is on creating global leaders for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Recognizing that this era of rapid technological disruption requires a new brand of leader that is agile and resilient, Thunderbird prepares professionals equipped with a global digital mindset, cross-cultural intelligence, and transdisciplinary skillsets to drive innovation and success.

Emotional intelligence

One trait that computers and AI-powered robots can’t yet master is emotional intelligence – giving us humans the upper-hand when it comes to harnessing those all-important interpersonal communication capabilities. Skilled communicators who can empathize with their team and synthesize their collective knowledge will be able to make informed business decisions and react appropriately to any developments. They can lead with a human touch, inspiring confidence in their teams.

Cultural intelligence

Globalization has had tremendous effects on business and international affairs in just the last few years. As the world continues to become more interconnected than ever before, the ability to work effectively across cultures, languages and borders is imperative.

Cultural intelligence is about much more than just having an awareness of other nations and their differing ways of life or the need for diversity. Deployed properly, it can enhance your global mindset and make you more influential, bringing great benefits to your business and employer, improving team morale, and ensuring greater access to resources, knowledge, and of course, talent.

The Master of Global Management program at Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona offers a Global Affairs concentration that equips students with the knowledge and skills to flourish in global business and political markets.

Cohesive collaboration

Future leaders will need to inspire and execute with passion and enthusiasm to keep team morale high. The last thing you want is your team, projects and goals to lose momentum or fall apart, which is why it’s important to master the art of leading as a social process where strong people management is key.

Tomorrow’s leaders must be able to bring people together and make them feel like they’re part of the solution to get the most out of them in a competitive environment. In a global economy, the intersection of business, international affairs and public policy requires leaders to have collaborative skills across disciplines in order to shape the dynamic circumstances impacting their organizations.

Novel and adaptive thinking

Amid rapid industry disruption, being intuitive in your thinking and coming up with innovative and creative ideas are crucial abilities if you want to get ahead and stay ahead. It’s also important that you can illustrate the value in your out-of-the-box thinking, either in money earned or costs saved.

Master of Global Management students at Thunderbird School of Global Management can opt to study a concentration in Creative Industries and Design Thinking that cultivates, enhances and hones their ability to link their knowledge of cultural industries with their entrepreneurial vision for the benefit of their global enterprise.

Active agility

This definitely isn’t as physical as it sounds. Being actively agile does, however, mean you’re happy and able to get on board with changes quickly without seeing them as a burden. You’ll be able to thrive under pressure and wield excellent problem-solving skills as you learn to convert changes into opportunities for innovation, success, and growth.

Cognitive flexibility

Cognitive flexibility is all about how quickly you can shift your focus and train of thought from one concept or system to another. Working in a complex and fast-moving sector, it’s important that you can lead through change and maintain a critical thought process while setting and pursuing objectives. Making data-informed decisions and managing several priorities simultaneously may seem like a momentous task, but it is something that can be picked up and mastered with expert instruction and elite training.

Mastering these seven skills will position you to thrive in a leadership role at a global organization where you can drive sustainable growth in an era of rapid change and intense competition.

This article was originally published in . It was last updated in

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