Three Super-Skills The Manager Of The Future Cannot Do Without

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Knowledge has always been power, but these days, the specific knowledge and skills needed to navigate the complexities and vicissitudes of the modern workplace have shifted dramatically. Sure, the core principles of management and leadership remain important, but to thrive in this dynamic environment, you'll need to cultivate three crucial super-skills: technological fluency, innovation leadership, and commercial acumen.


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Fortunately, Henley Business School Africa has your back. This month, the school – Africa’s only international, quadruple-accredited business school – has launched an exciting new suite of short programmes, facilitated by hand-picked local and international experts and designed to help you make sure the future of work doesn’t find you flat-footed. It’s as easy as one, two three.

1. Learn to swim in the digital current

Let's face it, technology fluency is no longer a luxury, it's a non-negotiable. The World Economic Forum's Future of Jobs Report paints a clear picture: technology adoption is the engine driving business transformation. More than 85% of surveyed organisations see embracing new technologies as the key to future success. Big data, cloud computing and AI are at the forefront of this digital wave, with more than 75% of companies planning to adopt them within the next five years.

The digitalisation of commerce is another game-changer. Digital platforms and apps are poised for near universal adoption, with 86% of companies expecting to integrate them into their operations. So, how do you navigate this tech tsunami?

Maybe you’re paddling in the shallows, but watch out, the rising waters will engulf you soon enough. Competitive advantage will lie with those who dive in and learn to swim with the currents. We can’t all be tech wizards, but what you can do is become a lifelong learner of technology and leverage these tools to enhance the way you work.

Henley’s short programme, AI and Data-Driven Leadership: Navigating Digital Transformation, can get you out of the starting blocks. This intensive three-day immersion will help you explore the latest advancements in AI and data analytics, particularly their potential applications within your industry.

Remember, in 2023 simply mentioning AI could boost a company's stock price. But that won't be enough for long. Investors are seeking leaders who can translate AI interest into tangible growth strategies. By becoming tech-savvy, you position yourself as a leader capable of navigating this new technological frontier.

2. Champion creative disruption

Understanding AI is just one piece of the puzzle. Future-proof managers must also be champions of innovation, able to channel technology into new products and services that are not just novel but also useful, which means they are solving real challenges and creating new value. The world and the world of business relies increasingly on innovation because we are not going to solve most of our current challenges with old solutions.

Innovation is a core capability of any company that wants to sustain an advantage in the marketplace, which is why creativity, ingenuity and a strong imagination are often hailed as the superpowers of tomorrow's careers. The Future of Jobs 2023 report lists creativity as number two of the top five skills of the future workplace. 

Give yourself a head start by honing your creative skills through Henley’s short programme Innovation Unleashed.

This practical and hands-on programme will show you how to build and sustain environments that nurture creativity and collaborative innovation using design thinking and other proven, powerful techniques that will enable you to generate, refine, and evolve original ideas and then translate these into tangible, impactful projects.

3. Level up your financial IQ

As the saying goes: ‘the more things change, the more they stay the same’, and when it comes to money matters, this is definitely the case. Business, at its core, revolves around creating value and innovation, and no matter how flashy or exciting, it’s meaningless if it's not financially viable. This is where commercial acumen comes in, and if you don’t have it, you need to take steps to acquire it fast.

The world of finance can be a complex beast, shrouded in jargon and acronyms, but happily, you don't have to become a CFO overnight to master financial literacy. The key lies in demystifying financial concepts and empowering yourself with no-nonsense skills that allow you to understand the essentials and connect the dots.

Henley’s new short programme Finance Decoded is your ticket to the table. You will gain skills in financial analysis, budgeting, forecasting, and strategic financial decision-making, along with the ability to convey financial information clearly to diverse audiences. This fosters better organisational understanding, facilitates informed decision-making, and ensures financial strategies align with overall business goals, ultimately driving a competitive advantage.

On your marks, get set, go!

By mastering these three crucial superpowers – tech savviness, innovation leadership, and financial literacy – you'll position yourself as a highly sought-after manager, well-equipped to navigate the twists and turns of the future workplace. Remember, the challenges we face may be vast and overwhelming at times, but good managers who know how to get things done will always be in demand. So, what are you waiting for? Sign up and start the journey to becoming the leader your organisation needs.

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