Case study: Young leaders have many outstanding points compared to their older counterparts
Young leaders lack a strategic perspective and in-depth knowledge of the field they are working in, but overall, they are superior to old leader.
Joseph Folkman – a Forbes writer specializing in writing stories based on business administration data – showed the results that young people are better leaders when comparing two groups: young and old leaders. This assessment is based on job data and reviews from many different groups, departments, and divisions within companies. Folkman said that every time companies promote young people to leadership positions, many people around them always doubt their abilities and wonder: “He doesn’t have much leadership management experience or “Do you think he can handle the job of a manager?”. Folkman confessed that, as an old boss, he always thought that veteran leaders were the ones who led the team more effectively. However, the data he found made him think again.
In an article on Harvard Business Review about more than 65,000 leaders. He and his colleague Jack Zenger screened and divided them into two groups: leaders 30 years old or younger and leaders over 45 years old. Folkman and colleagues drew some interesting points. Specifically, in the group of young leaders, 44% are classified as possessing comprehensive leadership qualities such as management skills, consistency, listening, inspiring employees… On the contrary, the group Only 20% of old leaders possess this comprehensive quality. When Folkman and his colleagues compiled evaluation data from different departments, younger leaders were rated better in all categories. However, from some other comments and data, Folkman also pointed out the limitations of young leaders. Specifically, they are not completely trusted by their subordinates and colleagues, and they always doubt their ability to represent the company. Some comments pointed out that young leaders lack strategic perspectives and in-depth knowledge of the field they are working in. Folkman said that is not too big a problem because those things will be learned and improved over time.
Here are 6 reasons Folkman concluded when he said that a young leader can do good work.
1. Be ready to accept change:
Young leaders always encourage change. They always receive and “market” new ideas. They are brave to make changes even though they know they will encounter many difficulties. Maybe, their lack of experience makes them look at things optimistically. Yet, they possess the courage to make big changes and are willing to be reformers.
Young leaders always know how to make others energized for work and arouse excitement, helping employees accomplish their goals. Compared to the group of older leaders, they tend to lead and inspire work rather than forcing employees to work.
3. Be open to counterargument:
Young leaders are completely open to criticism from employees. They regularly ask employees for their input on projects and expect to receive serious feedback related to their tasks. From there, they will absorb and fix the unconvincing things. In this regard, older leaders are less willing to accept criticism from employees.
4. Continuous improvement:
Young leaders are always ready to challenge and do not accept the current status quo. They are always looking for modern methods to complete work more effectively and with higher quality.
5. Focus on goals:
Young leaders will do everything possible to accomplish their goals. They always crave results and will focus maximum energy to achieve their goals. On the contrary, when a person works in a company for a long time, they become easily satisfied, considering the less-than-stellar results to be just enough.
6. Raise goals:
Young leaders are always ready to set higher goals. Meanwhile, old leaders often set safe goals because they do not have to work too much. Young leaders tend to set difficult goals and encourage their employees to “fight” to complete the task.
Every company will come to a point where they need young people to replace previous leaders. Understanding the strengths of young people will create great opportunities, leading to success for companies.