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Top Leadership Skills in The New Normal

Donald is a freelance B2B and B2C content writer specializing in sales copies, newsletters, landing pages, blog articles, and user guides.

What is Leadership in the 21st Century Skills?

There is so much new and different about leadership in the 21st century. While the past years considered leadership to be an avenue for controlling and assigning roles to subordinates, 21st-century leadership requires more than mere management. In the digital age, leadership demands more skills than were required in the past years. Leadership principles remain, but the application criteria have changed significantly.

In the 21st century skills, leadership is at the center of all components of organizational management. It is impossible to work in any role within an organization without possessing the qualities of a leader. A 21st-century employee must demonstrate the core leadership skills to successfully accomplish his or her responsibilities.

Before you are considered a leader, there are core abilities that must be demonstrated by the individual. The person must showcase the ability to work in a team, commit and focus on their responsibilities, and have a high emotional quotient. These are important abilities that are vital in managing oneself and others. Therefore, leadership is an essential skill in the 21st century. It is impossible to work in any setting, either as an employee or entrepreneur, without possessing leadership. Even when you possess massive educational qualifications, there is a need to exhibit leadership qualities to succeed.

What is leadership in 21st-century skills? It is the ability to collaborate with others to meet your obligations in a particular position. Leadership is vital for the successful management of organizations. Besides, it is through leadership that 21st-century organizations optimize service delivery and value addition through customer service.

Leadership is the skill that brings focus and ensures that the daily operation does not swerve from the primary goals. The organization's mission is at the center of every strategic decision made by the team leaders, administrators, and executive managers. This is a vital component that requires every team member to possess leadership qualities to work successfully within an organization.

What are the 7 Core Skills of a Leader?

There are numerous core skills that define a leader in the 21st century. The leader should be able to guide people in an ever-changing environment. There is a need to be able to lead people through emotional challenges, including conflicts and crises, without being harsh or insensitive.

Here are seven core skills that are important to any leader.

Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is an important skill for a leader in the 21st century. This is the ability to understand, identify, and manage emotions. In the contemporary business setting, leaders manage diverse emotions each day, including the experiences of other workers. Therefore, it is important to understand how to identify these emotions and make clear judgments about the issues being raised.


After emotional intelligence, a leader must be empathetic. This skill enables leaders to understand what others feel professionally and personally. Every decision is not just made to increase sales or make the business successful. The advancement of business goals is hinged on the ability to understand people and be human enough to agonize with their situations.


As a leader in the 21st century, one must be bold and assertive. Confidence is a skill that ensures leaders possess convictions about their decisions and the company's mission. They can also withstand criticism and successfully face challenges without feeling discouraged.


A leader must be able to adapt to the changing business environment in order to succeed. It is important to think outside the box and solve challenges creatively.


In the 21st century, the leader must be able to communicate effectively and get others to understand their goals. This involves expressing their thoughts and feelings through meetings, emails, phone calls, or any other form of communication.


Another core skill is the ability to inspire others. The leader must ensure that the team maintains high morale and a sense of hope during challenging times. Also, the leader's actions can also inspire others to act in a smarter and better way.

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The final important skill is the ability to be inclusive in decision-making. All aspects or decisions the leader makes should be inclusive and support all people in the organization. Every member of the team must feel included and supported in the team.

What is the Greatest Leadership Skill?

The greatest leadership skill in the 21st century is emotional intelligence. While people get promoted because of their educational qualifications and technical know-how, their ability to lead organizations and succeed hinges on emotional intelligence.

What is emotional intelligence?

Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, including recognizing how these emotions influence the people around you. The idea was first developed during the 1990s by researchers Peter Salovey and John Mayer. It was popularized later by Daniel Goleman.

Goleman underscored the importance of emotional intelligence in leadership. Reporting in the Harvard Business Review, he noted that the most effective leaders have a similar level of emotional intelligence. While having a high IQ and technical know-how is vital, the success of a leader is strongly determined by emotional intelligence.

Over the years, emotional intelligence (EQ) has become a must-have skill for all leaders. One of the strongest predictors of leadership performance is emotional intelligence. Unless an individual can manage their emotions, they cannot perform optimally in their roles.

Many employers also report that they value EQ compared to IQ. Individuals with high emotional intelligence are deemed to stay calmer under pressure and can resolve conflicts effectively. Moreover, they can respond to team members with empathy.

There are four major aspects related to emotional intelligence: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. All these components are vital in enhancing emotional intelligence.

Emotional intelligence matters because leaders set the tone for the organization's approach to issues. When leaders lack emotional intelligence, the consequences are far-reaching and result in reduced employee engagement. Even if a person has excellent technical skills, they can fail to manage an organization effectively because they lack emotional intelligence. Mastering emotional intelligence ensures one can advance in their career on many fronts.

What are the Top Three Leadership Skills?

Several leadership skills are in demand in the job market. While the leadership skills are many and varied, every employee must have three top leadership skills to advance faster in their career. These traits enable people to lead, deliver projects, initiate programs, collaborate, and empower others within the organization. An individual with these three top skills will be able to guide other people to achieve the organization's goals and drive change.


Decisiveness is an important leadership skill that every leader must possess. An effective leader must be able to make decisions faster within specific time frames. As one gains experience, they are also expected to make their decision-making more efficient. There is a need to create proper incentives to support all team members by ensuring that decisions apply to all. As a leader, one must never exhibit any sense of favoritism to certain team members. Another aspect of decisiveness is the need for research, evaluation, problem-solving, and goal-setting. These are important traits that ensure each decision attains the desired outcomes.


Another important skill for leaders is the ability to solve problems. The organization experiences challenges in the day-to-day undertaking of its roles. Therefore, leaders must have incentives to solve any emerging issues within the organization. There is a need to create a solution for all emerging issues and ensure sufficient resources are allocated to alleviate the issues arising from the challenges. The leader must be at the forefront of dealing with the issues and advance their pursuit of success.

Ability to Teach and Mentor

A leader is an essential member of the team. Every member of the organization looks up to the leader for guidance on various issues. Therefore, the leader must be able to teach and mentor others competently.

Leadership in the New Normal Post-Pandemic World

The coronavirus pandemic imposed many challenges on how organizations are managed. There are also permanent changes that have occurred in the workplace, which require a drastic change in leadership approaches. Hybrid work is now a new normal that organizations must deal with.

The pandemic has accelerated a trend unfolding over the last few years. As the world becomes more digital, complex decisions must be made to address the issues in the post-pandemic world. So, leadership in the new normal requires specific skills that are a must-have for all leaders.

All leaders must be able to communicate effectively and express their feelings, expectations, and thoughts. As workers become more independent, there is a need to be able to communicate to achieve success across the organization. Communication includes making first impressions, building relationships with co-workers, and expressing the organization's goals. In the post-pandemic era, communication must be done effectively to guarantee positive results and success. Moreover, stellar communication enhances the bonds between team members and clients. This will lead to long-term benefits for the organization.

Leaders in the new normal must be able to collaborate and set examples for subordinates. Instead of enforcing rules and outlining expectations, the leader must be hands-on in creating spaces for sharing and exchanging information. This is the basis for driving performance and ensuring that top talent is retained within the organization.

The new normal also requires prioritization of family values, learning, and promoting common interests. The pandemic was a death blow to the old-schooled leadership approach. Therefore, succeeding in business requires connection and corporate fluidity. Workers usually feel better when their needs are addressed and understood.

In the post-pandemic world, leadership succeeds through collaboration, understanding, and empathy. This new type of leadership ensures that health and family values are promoted. There is also a commonality in protecting each other and ensuring that workers adopt healthy lifestyles.

Leadership Challenges in the New Normal

The pandemic has shown that no one is immune to leadership challenges. There are still many roadblocks to the successful management of workplaces in the new normal. Leaders in different multinational organizations have reported several core challenges that have emerged in the post-pandemic world.

Communicating Purpose and Value

One of the major challenges experienced by organizations in the new normal is the communication of purpose and value. More than ever, workers would like to understand their purpose and value within an organization. Some of the core questions that workers need to answer include why they are in the organization, the company's vision, where they are going, and how they fit into the organization's plans. Having the inspiration of the shared vision is important. Also, the emergence of a hybrid work environment complicates this aspect and causes more challenges in bringing workers together.

Fear of Causing Problem

The post-pandemic period has many people living with a high level of anxiety, causing many to fear making mistakes. Moreover, people always want to be perceived as an important part of the organization. This also contributes to the fear and anxiety experienced by workers. Therefore, leaders must deal with these issues and ensure that individuals feel confident as part of the team. The leader is mandated to create a favorable environment where people can learn and grow. This is vital in guaranteeing long-term growth for the company. With the fear of causing problems, team members cannot ask questions or get guidance when they feel stuck.

Overcoming Talent Shortage

The new normal has also led to a shortage of talent in the job market. Many people have left the workforce since the emergence of the coronavirus. There are knowledge gaps because the pandemic displaced talented and experienced workers from the workplace. In this regard, leaders are mandated to prevent and seal these knowledge gaps, ensuring that companies focus on their core mandates in delivering results.

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