The world is going through a technological revolution that is going to totally change the way we work, the way we live and the way we relate to each other in productive organizations, but in the short term, this will certainly be reflected in all organizations.
Organizations, therefore, will have to revolutionize their leadership (and management) style to adapt OKRS.
Leadership 4.0 indicates the new style of leadership (and management) required today and in the future to succeed in the transition to the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Recent studies indicate that this revolution is different from the one we have experienced before, so even the leader will have to be different, or at least transform, to adapt to the strong digital impact that will ensue.
Business, our lives, our social and ethical systems will be transformed.
Companies will grow and fall at tremendous speed. There will be great opportunities, but also deep breaks.
4.0 leaders will have to change organizational structures to make them ready to face an increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world.
Let us then examine the main features of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and its difference with the previous ones.
The technologies that drive Industry 4.0 include not exhaustively …
- Intelligent and connected machines and systems;
- Nanotechnologies, quantum computing and 3D printing;
- Renewable energy and energy storage;
- Driverless and networked cars;
- New forms of money (e.g. Bitcoin);
- Advanced robotics, drones and biotechnological discoveries;
- Economy of sharing real estate and furniture (e.g. Uber);
- Internet connection of the most common things (IOT, Big Data);
- Rental of IT services (Cloud Computing)
- Computer network security (Cybersecurity)
And, with them, all the risks, opportunities and economic, political, legal and social problems that may arise.
In reality, we are only at the beginning of this strong break with the past, but the fusion of all these changes makes the Fourth Industrial Revolution different from the others, at least in its speed, breadth and impact strength.
Let’s also take a look at the other three industrial revolutions to understand why.
Industry 1.0 (1900-1980)
During the First Industrial Revolution, the key technological key was the steam engine that replaced the power of human muscles. This made possible the mechanization of production and mass transport.
The prevailing leadership in this period of the last century was based on the hierarchization of functional organizational units, where the efficiency in the net subdivision of tasks was fundamental (we could call it Leadership 1.0).
Industry 2.0 (1980-2000)
Electric power was the technological key of the Second Industrial Revolution, favoring mass production such as, for example, car assembly.
To be adapted to the demands of the mass market, leadership is transformed by adopting new organizational rules through divisional units focused on the product, with a very scientific managerial approach (Leadership 2.0).
Industry 3.0 (2000-today)
The technological keys of the Third Industrial Revolution were the introduction of microprocessors in the automation of production processes and information technology in the management of globalization.
In this context oriented to customization, the customer has become more informed and, therefore, more demanding, becoming an active part of the process at least as regards its interference in the choice of products. Leadership had to adapt to changing technology, changing customer needs and interdependence with the market. The computerization of the organization and management systems have made this possible through matrix or project organizations (Leadership 3.0).
The technology of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is mainly the arrival of the Internet up to the most remote devices, in factories, in our homes, in our streets, in our forests, in our cars, everywhere.
Virtual networks of digital objects will produce a large number of data (Big Data), which will enable autonomous decision-making systems or support decision-making, connected and communicating.
The 4.0 leadership, necessary to take full advantage of Industry 4.0, will undoubtedly need to increase new skills to manage and guide the “work of knowledge” with OKR Software. It is essential to transform the traditional “Business-to-Consumer (B2C)” organizational model, where the company produces and the consumer buys, towards a model that we could call “Consumer-to-Business (C2B)”, mainly based on electronic commerce, where the customer could decide the product and the price and the companies decide whether or not to accept the offer (an example is Priceline).
Organization 4.0 requires a Leadership 4.0
The new organizational models 4.0, will take shape with the pushed integration of digital technology, both in decision-making choices, in the evaluation of results, and way of guiding people.
Have you noticed how the duration of each industrial revolution has decreased over the years?
The fundamental core of Leadership 4.0, in a world of continuous and rapid changes, must be a visionary leadership that will be able to see and train people in the short term for the future.
The Leader 4.0 will have to be able to search for the future, go there and explore it, then return to the present to train and equip people for the future.
The path to achieving a complete digital transformation from what we have called Leadership 3.0 to Leadership 4.0 essentially consists of 5 leadership skills, which allow us to face and succeed in volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous environments. Let’s find out together.
Create a digital vision
The journey towards the digital transformation of the organization begins when those who lead, Leader 4.0, begin to instill a transformative OKR of how the organization, or its group, will be adaptive in new fast and changing environments. The main effort will be to make it clear that those who do not comply will be wiped out.
Convert the vision into action
We have already seen that the leader is like a navigator, that is:
- Knows the way (vision);
- Show the way to others (involvement);
- Reaches the goal with others (action plan),
The Leader 4.0, after having succeeded in involving the whole organization with its vision, makes the vision real and pursues it, creating a plan of initiatives to arrive at the set objectives.
Create a collective or distributed leadership
The challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, complex, specialized and varied, can only be addressed through an organizational network of intelligence and collective leadership.
In this type of organization, each is a leader in his or her area of expertise (horizontal leadership), but through a network of relationships, communication and mutual trust, each individual leader is strengthened by the support of other leaders, through a network facilitator leader (leadership vertical).
The model of leadership (and human intelligence) will have to reflect in part the distributed decision model of the hardware and software systems that will interact in organizations, in lives and in societies.
Someone spoke of “democratic monarchy”.
Redesigning the unitary effort
The Leader 4.0 will have to involve all the talent of the organization to redesign all the knowledge that is needed and the activities that must be completed to arrive at the maximum efficiency of the performances with the minimum effort or cost.
Governing the transformation
This capacity is critical, since it acts like the rudder that guides digital initiatives in the right direction, ensuring their sustainability on the journey of transformation.
We are just at the beginning, but the world is fast and so must the transformation of leaders to face this imminent and actual revolution.