Bosses warned about major leadership changes in a tech-driven economy

Bosses warned about major leadership changes in a tech-driven worldWith companies holding ever greater amounts of data and facing heightened scrutiny through social media, employers need to consider the wider implications of their business decisions. This was the message of the President of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), who has warned business leaders and students in Birmingham of the challenges facing bosses in the rapidly evolving tech and data-driven economy. Speaking at the annual MacLaren Memorial Lecture at Aston University, Bruce Carnegie-Brown told the 200-strong audience that the digital revolution is having a transformative effect on the priorities of business leaders, which pose new management challenges. “The growth of social media has made an invaluable contribution in democratising the control of information, he said by, “increasing transparency through universalising access to data and doing it in real time”. Carnegie-Brown, who is also the chairman of Lloyd’s of London, added: “With information more accessible than ever before, those that own or collect data find themselves with huge amounts of power – both social and commercial. But with great power comes great responsibility and balancing these two forces is the greatest leadership challenge of today’s generation of business leaders.”

Visual images re-broadcast globally of the impact of business on the environment, whether in the exploitation of labour in developing economies or the damage to our oceans caused by plastics, have dramatically altered the priorities of business leaders as the ‘how’ becomes as important as the ‘what’ in evaluating a company’s performance.”

Carnegie-Brown said that Millennials, as digital natives, understand this revolution better than any other generation and that they must gain skills needed to lead as they start their careers: “CMI’s 21st Century Leaders report found that 70% of employers want all university students to have access to management, enterprise and leadership modules to improve their employability. It is up to organisations like CMI to work with universities and employers to help graduates and post-graduates gain the skills we need and the employers want in our leaders of the future.”

The MacLaren Memorial Lecture is an annual event held jointly by Aston University and the CMI. The event has run since 1953 and has attracted major speakers from business and industry. It commemorates the life of James MacLaren, one of the most eminent industrialists in Birmingham’s history.

CMI also partners with Aston University to dual-accredit BSc degrees in Business & Management and International Business & Management to give graduates work-ready professional skills.

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