Most of the old age entrepreneur practices while being tried and tested, they no longer hold a candle to the evolved mind-set of the current workforce.
- Pravin Shekar
As a new entrepreneur begins their journey into realisation and execution of their venture, they often look for advice from senior personnel in the relevant field, or from texts detailing management practices they can benefit from. These practices have been in use for decades and are in severe need of an upgrade. While most of these practices have been tried and tested, and have produced satisfactory results in the past, they no longer hold a candle to the evolved mind-set of the current workforce.
According to a research study conducted by Amdocs India, millennials are all set to make up 50% of India’s workforce by 2020 and by 2025; this number is expected to reach 75%. This new influx of working populace has an evolved set of beliefs in their professional, social and cultural values. While a majority of the senior management in most Indian companies belongs to an older generation, it is important for them to understand the motivation, needs and demands of their employees. This has started a shift in the way operations within a business are carrying out their functions. This shift in perspective has been reflected in various conclaves conducted across India, where speakers from prestigious organisations have proclaimed their support towards this new school of thought. Some of the leadership approaches that entrepreneurs should look into while beginning their new venture are:
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Don’t stick to the pre-determined rules:
According to a number of industry stalwarts, the reason for their success is their ability to create their own set of rules. Every company is different, and it is the entrepreneur’s job to understand the changes they need to create within their organisation to achieve success. While it’s the road less travelled, more difficult with few to guide and at times the opportunity cost is too high, not being part of the herd helps these organisations and their services stand out and become valuable in the eyes of the consumer.
Give lower management a fighting chance:
While the traditional top-to-bottom hierarchy is being disregarded in favour of a flat structure, entrepreneurs need to execute this new structure effectively. This means giving every member of the organisation a chance to put their ideas forth, and give them the accountability to see it through. Through this, employees feel like their opinions matter to the organisation, and become more dedicated towards their work and employers. The new-age workforce is brimming with new avenues for exploration, and is constantly on the lookout for opportunities where they can shine. Thus, it is important for entrepreneurs to take full advantage of the skills and abilities each one of their
employees bring to the table to achieve maximum success.
Gain cultural intelligence:
Every individual is different, and follows their own set of traditions and values. Because we are becoming more globally entrenched as a society, understanding, appreciating and leveraging differences each become critical to effective leadership. By carrying out these practices, it shows that the leader not only is aware of the different traditions that different people hold dear, but also respects them. This helps build trust and loyalty, not just in employees, but also in business partners and consumers.
In today’s fast-paced world, a dizzying variety of elements change at the speed of light. From viewpoints to technological avenues, there is evolution occurring at each step. It is extremely crucial for an entrepreneur to keep a lookout for these changes, and adapt their practices to accommodate them better. This helps the entrepreneur stay ahead of the curve in terms of satisfying the needs and demands of their internal and external customers.
- Pravin Shekar (CEO & Outlier Marketer of Krea eKnowledge) is also a member of Marico chairman Harsh Mariwala-backed Ascent Foundation. Views expressed are the author’s own.