The tech-savvy leader – a necessary leadership skill in a hybrid world

The current global shift into hybrid workplaces has had a substantial effect on organisations to pick up their pace for realising digital transformation

Leaders around the globe don’t just have to work with new technologies, they need to embrace the new digital approach to collaboration and communication. They need to lead their organisations in a quest to understand the impact certain technologies might have on the business, their people and clients. Leaders don’t have to be come tech experts, but they have to become tech-savvy and digitally fluent.

Leaders have been asking me throughout the last few months how to keep their teams focussed and motivated during the crisis and how to lead their remote teams well and keep them connected. The answer of consistent communication, clear expectations, empowerment through projects and reward and recognition programs (read last week’s blog: Leading Remote Teams in a Hybrid World: has to go hand in hand with leaders embracing technology and leading a digitalised approached in a hybrid world.

How to become tech-savvy?

First of all, leaders need to lose the fear of something going wrong or needing a detailed instruction manual first. Explore, jump in, try it out and be curious. No one is being asked to code, it’s all about application and we find that using technology often helps us to learn about the application. Apply the mindset of exploring the best technology for your organisation, your employees and your clients. Technology shapes the way on how your teams collaborate, communicate and stay productive.

Productivity has increased for some organisations working from home whereas other leaders have seen a decrease. Fact is that technology impacts productivity so as leaders it’s our job to explore and chose the digital approach that is right for our environment.

“Tomorrow’s leaders will need to have a technology fluency that lets them anticipate opportunities and threats, distinguish hype from credible, and embrace transformative possibilities.” – Michael Tipsord

Be mindful of the role that technology plays and invest in training and timely rollouts. Digital transformation is less about technology and more about people. You can purchase any type of technology but the ability to adapt to an even more digital future depends on developing the skills and future proofing your employee’s potential. I always used to say ‘your CRM and database is only as good as the data put in by your people, no matter how nifty the application is’.

Here are 5 steps to embrace digitalisation and become a tech-savvy leader:

  1. Explore and be curious. Jump right in and try out new apps or software applications. Use tools like YouTube, blogs, podcasts, and TED Talks which can provide an overview of new technology and how it can best be applied.
  2. Surround yourself with tech-savvy people. Build a network of tech-savvy people in your own team and in your tribe. You want people to be able to answer questions, make recommendations and solve problems quickly. Make sure you ask the right questions. As a leader you don’t have to be the expert but look at the opportunity that technology places for your team and organisation
  3. Get your team involved. Moving into a hybrid world where we have to disrupt ourselves and our products and services, there is no better time than getting your team members on board and let them lead projects with the goal to implement new technologies and digitalise your organisation. Tip, ask your young millennials and GenZ’s.
  4. Focus on productivity. Productivity has become a focus point in the hybrid world. Explore how digitalisation and new technology can help with teams and employees working more productively. You don’t just want to use technology for technology’s sake. What can the tool replace that is no longer available to your teams? Your systems need to be integrated and work together. This article has a great 12 Ways Technology Can Increase Workplace Productivity:
  5. Don’t forget soft skills. Your technology is only as good as the users using it. Make sure that you have buy in from your people and that the implementation is supported by all departments. Allow people to be trained on how to best use the new tools and enable your leaders for success. Lead by example and use technology well.

If you would like to work with me, please email me

Jessica Schubert

Jessica Schubert is a Leadership Expert, Executive Coach, Facilitator, Author and Speaker. She is obsessed with helping people realise their potential and unlock their inner genius.

Born in Cologne, Germany, Jessica has travelled the world and has spent more than 20 years leading cross-cultural teams in competitive markets throughout Europe and the Asia Pacific. As she worked with and coached her own diverse, cross-cultural teams, she came to realise that learning about yourself and developing interpersonal skills is the most powerful tool to lead and influence people around you.

In 2013 she launched Intact Teams, where she and her team have worked with thousands of leaders in organisations worldwide, delivering custom-designed leadership programs and workshops. These interactive and engaging programs are offered both virtually and in-person, helping leaders and their teams succeed in a complex and ever-changing business environment.

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Jessica Schubert