Transitioning Your Leadership Style: Six Traits of a Modern Leader

modern leader

It is not hard to see how much the workplace has evolved over the years. As generations mature and enter the workforce, the culture of the work environment has changed according to their personalities and experiences. Along with the overall work environment, the concept of leadership has transitioned to accommodate changes in technology and culture. So, now that we are in 2018, how do you adapt your leadership style to a modern workforce in your dealership? Read on for six ways to transform your leadership style to that of a modern leader.

Give Your Employees a Sense of Purpose

These days and times, employees are driven more by social responsibility than in any other time in history. According to Cone research, 79 percent of people prefer to work for a socially responsible company. As a modern leader, it is vital that you provide avenues for workers to volunteer, donate to their favorite charity, and even connect the vision of the dealership with the community you work in. This step adds an extra layer of purpose to an employee’s role.

Be Open to Change

Within the past decade, we have seen a turn toward remote work, an emphasis on open workspaces, greater dependence on cloud-based technologies, and many other trends that have defined today’s workplace. Modern leaders have to not only be ready to deal with these changes, but they have to lead their teams through these times of disruption. It is impossible to ignore today’s changes, so you have to be nimble enough to move with the times when appropriate.

Embrace Transparency

Today, customers are highly concerned about the security of their data and want to know if they can trust companies they purchase from. Modern leaders have to build credibility with potential car buyers and employees in as many ways as possible. Whether it’s revealing how you encrypt data to prevent cybersecurity breaches, or making your promotion and employee raise processes clear to new employees, it is crucial to be as open as possible.

Manage Complexity

Change can be complicated. New technologies, globalization, and volatile economic times require today’s leaders to be prepared to simplify complex situations. Also, it is common for companies to hold on to complicated processes because of comfort or familiarity. Modern leaders can take their companies to new heights if they make a practice of challenging the status quo. The goal should be to move the dealership forward instead of allowing it to stay in its current state.

Become a Mentor

The day of authoritarian leadership is over. Employees, especially millennials, are looking for leaders who are mentors and coaches. Workers want to be creative, innovative, and collaborative in their approach to work. Leaders who facilitate this desire are bound to see higher levels of engagement and productivity among their dealership staff. So, take the time to teach instead of tell, and always offer opportunities for employees to train and develop new skills.

Know That It’s Okay to be Human

This goes along with the previous entry. The days of unfeeling and stoic leadership are long gone. Employees want to know they are working for someone who is authentic, genuine, and open to suggestions. Collaboration characterizes today’s work environment, and this also extends to leaders. If you make a mistake, admit it. If an employee has an excellent idea, try it out and acknowledge its success. While you may be higher in the hierarchy, employees want to know you respect them enough to be open with them.

Final Thoughts

It is entirely natural for leaders to have to assess how they are handling changes in their workplaces. New workplace trends, generational differences, and technologies make it impossible to remain the same. However, there are ways to stay true to yourself while embracing new trends to inform your leadership style. Transitioning to modern leadership not only helps you but it better positions your team to embrace their roles within your dealership.


Sources: Business News Daily, Duct Tape Marketing, America’s Charities, Forbes