Leadership Skills for 2023

Here at The Roundtable, we’ve been speaking to our clients, colleagues and HR leaders and keeping a sharp eye on the latest reports and surveys. Why? We are keeping our fingers on the pulse of what is shifting in organizations and the trends that will impact leadership development in 2023.

A recent survey from Gartner, which polled more than 800 HR leaders across 60 countries and all major industries to identify their priorities and challenges for 2023. A full 60% of HR leaders identified “leader and manager effectiveness” as their top priority with organizational design and change management, employee experience, recruiting and future of work filling out the Top Five positions.

This is exactly in line with everything we’ve been hearing and reading. A few of the driving forces behind these trends include economic uncertainty with rising inflation and the potential for a recession, along with the talent war and global supply chain volatility. Welcome to a VUCA world that isn’t going anywhere soon!

Three Key Traits for 2023

So, what does the report say? It outlines that “…the human-to-human dynamic in the workplace pushes leaders to display human-centric leadership, defined as leading with authenticity, empathy and adaptivity. These traits have been listed for some time among the key qualities of great leaders — but they were considered nice to have. Employees today demand them.”

Managers today – both senior and middle managers – are, quite simply, overwhelmed. Yet they are under intense pressure to support their team members in this new hybrid world. The factor in that the responsibilities of managers — and the number of workers who report to them — have skyrocketed over the last few years. According to Gartner research, 70% of HR leaders say managers are overwhelmed by their responsibilities.

A New Learning Approach for Over-Stretched Leaders

Pandemic aside, it’s this ever-stretched work environment that means that one-or-two-day learning off-sites are off the table. Leaders don’t want to take the time away from their job, and research shows that even if they did, learning is less likely to stick. The new way for managers and leaders to learn is “in the flow” – smaller, snackable learning and development bites. And, there is a need for context and experience.

Perhaps this is why leadership development programs like our Roundtable for Leaders or Catalyst programs work so well in this environment, as they provide a group learning environment where learning is done in small groups over time. So it’s more like drip irrigation that nurtures new skills and behaviours, rather than a one-off blast. Leaders and managers share experiences and learn from one another; they can then take their newly developed talents and apply them to the workplace the next day.

What I find so magical about the Catalyst program is that the leaders themselves shape the content. Based on the priorities for the business, our leaders identify content that is crucial to the business and our Catalyst group members. That’s what makes it powerful; they’re helping chart the direction, which makes them even more invested in the learning and the outcomes.

Anna Petosa VP, People Ops Pelmorex Corp.

Learning in the Moment Improves Results

This ability to learn and apply in the moment, in a real-world context helps learning stick, and accelerates new skills and behaviours. A recent Catalyst cohort reported:

  • 100% increase in leadership self-awareness
  • 100% improved coaching skills
  • 100% improved leadership abilities
  • 96% added new tools to their leadership approach

Peer group coaching may be just what your organization has been looking to take its employee development efforts to the next level. If you’d like to know more about our group coaching programs, contact us to start a conversation.



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