Innovators are Best Leaders

INNOVATORS HIGHLIGHTED AS BEST KIND OF LEADERS

Africa News Service
By Calvin Augustine

Oct 25, 2001

The advances in technology of the past decade would have been worthless if not accompanied by strong leadership skills, says technology futurist James Canton.

Leaders needed to nurture technology so their organisations reaped its benefits, he told delegates at the Executive Exchange Conference in Cape Town recently.

Four main leadership styles affected organisations and the way they embraced technology, he said.
  • The traditionalist often found at the highest level of organisations resisted change openly and reinforced the way things were always done. Technology in these organisations moved along with the rest of the market.
  • The most dangerous type of leader was the maintainer, who said yes but really meant no, as in the car industry when the global economy shifted. European and Asian car makers changed faster than their U.S. counterparts, and as a result took a greater share of the world car market.
  • The adaptors leaders who embraced change had been one of the drivers behind technology over the past 10 years.
  • However, the leadership style for the future was that of the innovator, who constantly looked for different ways to run business, he said. Innovators would shape the wealth of countries in the 21st century. Technology would drive 50% of real gross domestic product in the U.S., Asia and Europe.
Leaders who wanted to be apart of this new cycle needed look out for certain trends. The evolution of networks and computers into intelligent systems would be a key driver of business, while global connectivity would give rise to greater business opportunities.

Canton said the convergence of nanotechnology, biotechnology, quantum mechanics and information science would also change the way business was done, and companies in the electronic market space needed to grow their business in line with these advances. Business would move toward fully electronic market places as technological advances drove the redesign of their supply chains.

Canton said the convergence of nanotechnology, biotechnology, quantum mechanics and information science would also change the way business was done, and companies in the electronic market space needed to grow their business in line with these advances. Business would move toward fully electronic market places as technological advances drove the redesign of their supply chains.