Many think that soft leadership is the leadership of tomorrow. Thus, in this Expert Insight Interview, professor M. S. Rao discusses its importance and benefits. Professor M.S Rao is a Father of Soft Leadership, Founder of MSR Leadership Consultants, an award-winning International Leadership Guru, and author of fifty books.
The interview discusses:
- Shit in a leadership perception
- Characteristics of a soft leadership
- Combining hard and soft leadership
- Transitioning to a soft leadership
- Technology and self-reflection
The Perception Shift
Soft leadership represents leading people through a set of soft skills. There is a misconception that leadership has to be tough and only task-oriented. That is why many people think that soft skills are not as significant and a symbol of weakness. However, there has been a shift in the way how leadership is perceived globally. Millennials and newer generations prefer to work, walk, and talk with partners instead of leaders. Thus, even though traditional leadership has its advantages, the future is in soft leadership skills and mindset.
Characteristics of a Soft Leadership
Eleven characteristics construct soft leadership. Those characteristics are character, charisma, conscience, conviction, courage, communication, compassion, commitment, consistency, consideration, and contribution.
The Combination of Hard and Soft Leadership
It is a thin line between these two leadership styles. Hard leadership is vital in situations that are time-limited and in crisis. People need someone who will inspire them while leading them through the crisis. Global pandemic such as Covid19 required hard leadership in terms of enforcing global lockdowns. Even though lockdowns caused much dissatisfaction among people, that was the best solution to stop the spreading. However, during Covid19, many situations called for embracing soft leadership skills as well.
The Transition to Soft Leadership
Many leaders today were being taught their leadership styles by traditional or hard leaders. Thus, for a transition to soft leadership, they first have to change their mindset, and secondly, have to trust and rely on their soft skills. The post-pandemic world will be very hesitant and volatile. Thus, there will be an immense need for soft leadership to enhance global prosperity.
Technology and Self-Reflection
Before the pandemic, people were complaining that technology caused dehumanization and disconnection among people. However, during the pandemic, people leveraged technology to connect, communicate globally, and to continue working virtually. Moreover, many people used this time for self-reflection and to identify things that are truly important to them. Hence, in a post-pandemic world, people will focus more on stuff they are passionate about and have meaning and purpose. The pandemic caused all of us to embrace maybe forgotten humility, humanity, humbleness, and hope.
John is the Amazon bestselling author of Winning the Battle for Sales: Lessons on Closing Every Deal from the World’s Greatest Military Victories and Social Upheaval: How to Win at Social Selling. A globally acknowledged Sales & Marketing thought leader, speaker, and strategist. He is CSMO at Pipeliner CRM. In his spare time, John is an avid Martial Artist.