An Exploratory Literature Study into Digital Transformation and Leadership: Toward Future-Proof Middle Managers

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Abstract

This study aimed to obtain insight into the influence digital transformation has on future leadership behaviors and management. Up to now, most literature solely focuses on the need for strong strategic leadership to build and lead the transformation. This study was directed at future leadership behaviors and skills needed during and after digital transformation of management below senior level. An exploratory approach to review literature on digital transformation and leadership was used, inspired by the PRISMA protocol. Our findings show that digital transformation is a disruptive process that impacts the whole organization and results in new forms of working. This calls for altro-centric leadership, an other-centered leadership style. Specifically, soft skills such as empathy, humility, integrity and compassion are becoming increasingly important, as is understanding the power of digital technology. The emergence of artificial intelligence offers interesting opportunities. It could be used to handle quantifiable managerial tasks and evaluate the quantifiable part of performance, while managers focus on the soft skills side of management such as coaching, motivating and empowering employees. This study demonstrates the necessity to redefine leadership requirements in an increasingly digitalized world.
Original languageEnglish
Article number687
Number of pages18
JournalSustainability
Volume14
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jan 2022

Keywords

  • BEHAVIORS
  • CAPABILITIES
  • EVOLUTION
  • WORK
  • digital transformation
  • leadership
  • management
  • skills development
  • soft skills

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