The World Economic Forum \(WEF\), convening this week in Davos, recognizes that our globalized world demands a new style of leadership. The old, hierarchical command-and-control approach is increasingly outdated. Instead, the ability to seek out diverse viewpoints and identify blind spots has become essential.
Today’s inclusive leaders know that they don’t have all the answers. They’re interested in and engage with diverse stakeholders across multiple borders. Recent Ernst & Young research,The World is Bumpy: globalization and the new strategies for growth, highlights this leadership shift with two-thirds of the 1,000 executive respondents saying that they will increase the number of external partners with whom they work over the next three years.
To lead by example, the WEF has committed to more diversity among attendees and presenters, including a new mandate, instituted last year, which requires the Forum’s 100 strategic partners to bring at least one female executive among the five delegates they send to Davos. It’s a work in progress but, more than ever, they understand that diverse perspectives matter when trying to improve the state of the world.
Underpinning the need for a new style of leadership are the demographic shifts that represent one of the most powerful forces in the world. The makeup of our global workforce is changing across multiple dimensions and the leaders of tomorrow will come from the under-represented demographics of today.