This year, leaders across the country faced up to big questions about what the future of work will look like. The challenges came quickly, as The Great Resignation continued and competition for talent was high. As we approach a new year, this is an excellent moment to take a deep breath and get ready for what’s to come.
These are the challenges we predict leaders will face in 2023, along with advice on how best to meet them.
A Shifting Economy
As segments of the economy slow in 2023, it’s vital that leaders don’t lose sight of the lessons they learned during the pandemic. The employment landscape will begin to look very different, a trend that’s already begun with major layoffs at large employers such as Amazon and Meta.
Many leaders chose to lean into best practices while it was a competitive market for talent. They were clear about their values and focused on creating meaningful and rewarding work environments. They invested in company culture and offered clear paths for team members to grow and advance. They knew these actions would give them an edge as they attempted to attract and retain the best talent.
Now the employment advantage is turning in favor of businesses, and there’s a danger that leaders will revert to doing things the way they did before the pandemic. In 2023, there will likely be leaders who say, “We won’t worry about developing our own talent — we’ll just shake the tree whenever we need expertise. There’s no need to worry about internal culture, because someone else is always available to replace a dissatisfied or unmotivated team member.”
This mindset is a mistake. If you treat your people well, it builds trust, loyalty, commitment, and a sense of shared ownership. Returning to a form of transactional employment might seem quicker and easier in the short term, but it leaves you with a team of indifferent people who are only sticking around to serve their own needs.
On the other hand, if you invest in your team members, doing so will pay a great rate of return. Productivity will grow, creativity will blossom, and your business will flourish. When there isn’t outside pressure to do so, it can be difficult to hold yourself to a high standard.
But, at Fired-Up! Culture, our advice is to always invest in relationships. Regardless of what the economy is doing or the challenges you’re facing, taking care of your team yields far better results over the long term.
A Changing Political Climate
The election revealed that people’s appetites for extremism might be mellowing. Thoughtfulness and consistency are becoming prized qualities and people appreciate it when leaders behave in ways that demonstrate relatable values.
When the rubber meets the road, many companies quickly neglect their values or throw team members under the bus. As we enter the new year, there’s an opportunity to choose a different approach.
Keep in mind that clients and customers are more willing than ever to walk away from organizations that don’t put people first. To earn their loyalty, you must demonstrate alignment between values and actions. Show decency, civility, honesty, and kindness, and you’ll rise above the competition. If you’re all talk and no follow-through, the ramifications on your business could be severe.
Before the Next Year Begins: Take a Moment for Reflection
As a final note, the end of the year provides an excellent opportunity for reflection. Organizations frequently use the period to identify whether they’ve made progress on their stated goals and to measure their growth. As leaders, we should consider stopping to assess our personal growth.
Set aside a few moments to ask yourself:
- How did I grow in my leadership journey this year?
- What did I do to build relationships with the people around me?
- How did I improve the systems my team members work within?
- Did I do specific things to build the capacity of the people I serve?
Consider the areas you would like to grow in the coming year. Be honest about the places you’ve fallen short. Perhaps you made a massive error on internal communication or neglected your time management skills. That’s okay! By acknowledging these shortcomings and creating an intentional plan for improvement, you can set yourself on a path to even greater success in 2023.
Ready to start the new year with a growth mindset? Download our free eBook, How Executive Coaching Grows Leaders, Teams, and Organizations.
Author, Speaker, and Change Agent.
Chris leads a dynamic team of passionate change agents who are dedicated to partnering with organizational executives to create cultures that inspire, engage and ignite the best in people. Our work is dedicated to harnessing the power of culture to equip leaders, build amazing teams and align operation practices to delighting the customer and drive breakthrough results.