Leadership in the North East Digital Sector
North East digital businesses have much more to give to the North East than improving the prosperity of the local economy. Digital companies and the people who work in them can recreate the identity of the North East business community into one that is vibrant, dynamic, futuristic and leading edge. In doing so they can transform the perceptions of those people inside the region about what we are capable of achieving as well as those outside the region who see us as being outdated and stuck in the past. This region can become the place where people thrive, want to come to work and live as well as being a vibrant and energetic place to come to party.
What we require to bring this vision into reality is great leadership of and in digital companies. There are already signs of great leadership in several digital companies: leaders who are taking an innovative approach to how they engage their people and to the employer-employee relationship. There are examples across the North East of companies appreciating the integrity of people and their strong desire to contribute to the success of their company. New practices include giving employees much greater autonomy over their work patterns and even their holidays.
Whilst this is great news we have to do much much more…
Digital businesses have the potential to be the great companies of the future, and also shape that future of which they are part. We have to understand the implications of the advances that we are making in digital technology and its applications on organisational development and performance: and seize the opportunities arising from those advances on how we run our companies and lead our people.
For example, an approach to how we attract and keep the best people based on typically looking at the problem from the perspective of the business’s needs will not be good enough: we must also consider the effects of future advances on the interests and needs of the people we want to attract and retain. We have to be renowned for how we engage and interact with people to grow and attract the best talent to the region and then retain them: and we have to develop the creative leadership necessary to build organisations that are worthy of the people who want to contribute to them.
I will write further on different aspects of leadership of, and in, the North East Digital Sector over the coming months.