There has been a significant shift in leadership styles over the past decade. As Daniel H Pink, author of A Whole New Mind, writes, “our world is fast shifting from the information age to a conceptual age”. There is a new openness to incorporating a whole-brain approach, a term coined by Hermann International that encourages people to use “their whole brain – not just the parts they feel most comfortable with”.
As Corene told us in an interview, “Most people know the word ‘collaboration’ but don’t understand how to bridge the gap to where they want to be in a collaborative style.” In her role as coach and mentor, she helps leaders and teams tap into their creative thinking and feeling side more often. To start the process she employs TetraMap to help guide people to become more contextual in their leadership approach.
When did this shift to whole-brain thinking occur?
I was introduced to the concept at an Australasian International Coaching Federation Conference some years ago via a speaker-consultant for the United Nations who explored and highlighted this whole area. Moving forward, the UN has been encouraging a global movement and has opened up a whole new sphere of leadership growth and development.
Describe the younger generation’s working style.
As youngsters are coming through and moving into leadership roles they slot seamlessly into using a coach approach to work with and lead other generations. This style bridges the gap. First off they’re very respectful of the older generation’s wisdom and what they contribute and share. It’s a very collaborative approach – everyone contributes, there’s buy-in, increased engagement, and higher accountability. If we have youngsters in the room with a coach approach programme, in the first half of the first day they grasp the concept. Perhaps it’s something they have from their earlier education days or maybe it’s a generational thing – who knows? It just seems that we have found the right pieces to the jigsaw for leaders moving forward. People are excited; they don’t need to know all the answers and can utilise the strengths of others on their team, at the same time growing and developing them. There’s a different kind of energy that’s coming into teams and contributing to retention and a significant increase to business and their profitability.
We’re working with leaders now who are very keen to develop the people on their teams, holding that container wide open so their team members can be even more successful.
What major shifts are you noticing in learning and development?
People are always looking for high productivity and high positivity. If they just have high productivity it’s not sustainable in terms of retention, growth, and development. We’re working with leaders now who are very keen to develop the people on their teams, holding that container wide open so their team members can be even more successful. They are training people to move up and beyond – even into larger roles in other businesses. They are really contributing to the growth of people and we see this particularly in the agricultural and educational fields.
Why are leaders doing this?
To lessen their work load. There is something very empowering when leaders see their people growing from the inside out. It also means they create a work-life satisfaction; they are not always working and burning out. The load is spread by enthusiastic employees who are utilising their strengths consciously. It’s also passing on healthier habits to the generation coming through.
How do you get change to stick?
By simply growing and developing people, engaging them in the process of their own growth. Through empowering people with a coach approach to widen their horizons and become all that they can be. People are going to be their most passionate when working with their strengths.
How have you noticed any other major shifts in L&D?
Today you don’t need to know all the answers. It’s cultivating a more enjoyable above-the-line team culture. Businesses are also helping each other collaboratively providing a win-win-win for everyone – the days of competition are fading. Many clients, industry influencers we work with, turn to each other within their sector for inspiration. They still have that competitive energy but they’re willing to help each other out. That generates a more sustainable and rewarding environment for everyone at all levels.