1 in 3 managers find leadership more challenging in a hybrid world

  The post-pandemic world continues to be defined by remote work, with 70% of professionals in Saudi Arabia and the UAE admitting to having left their jobs or considering leaving because of a lack of flexibility in the workplace. However, new research from Coursera, a global online learning platform, illuminates the ways in which the rise of hybrid work – combined with digital transformation – is creating challenges for remote leaders worldwide, with 34% of managers stating that hybrid work has changed leadership for the worse.
The biggest resulting challenges created for leaders in a hybrid world, according to the research, are:
●        Ignoring work-life boundaries (cited as a top challenge by 38% of respondents)
●        Neglecting team morale and company culture (37%)
●        Communicating with credibility (30%)
●        Prioritizing incorrectly (29%)
●        Micromanagement (27%)
The report also identifies the increasing importance of middle-management roles in driving company culture and supporting organizational performance. Top leadership priorities for those in middle management positions include:
●        Motivating teams and leading by example (cited as a top priority by 57% of respondents)
●        Setting clear goals (54%)
●        Encouraging teamwork (51%)
●        Empowerment (48%)
●        Feedback and nurturing growth (48%)
Coursera, an online learning platform supporting more than 118 million registered learners across the world, surveyed 1000 managers in 8 countries, including Saudi Arabia. The survey report, conducted in collaboration with leadership champion GitLab and survey partner OnePoll, explores the nature of contemporary leadership, the key leadership areas upon which organizations should focus, and the specific skills today’s leaders require to connect, inspire, and thrive.
Zac Rule, Vice-President for Enterprise at Coursera, said: “There is a growing sense of urgency within businesses recognising the immediate need to provide high-quality leadership training. This report is designed to provide organizations with the insight necessary to adopt a skills-first approach to that training. We look forward to continued collaboration with businesses in Saudi Arabia and the wider Middle East region to help employees at all levels develop the new, job-relevant skills needed to become successful leaders in the modern workplace.”
Pressure building around employee skills development, coupled with the challenges in reporting soft skills impact and the difficulty of finding targeted and easy-to-execute leadership programs, means L&D leaders have to figure out how to scale leadership training quickly, at a reasonable cost.
To this end, Coursera currently supports the skills development of over 859K learners in Saudi Arabia (33% YoY), who are able to access 3,400+ Guided Projects, 5,400+ courses, 625+ Specializations, more than 125 Certificates (of which 30 are Entry-Level Professional Certificates), and 35+ degrees. To equip learners across the Kingdom with the high-demand digital skills needed to participate in the workforce, Coursera partnered with the National eLearning Center (NELC) to launch a nationwide skill training program. Prince Sultan University (PSU) has also recently integrated Coursera for Campus into its curriculum to deliver job-relevant skills and ensure that students are empowered to participate fully in the digital economy.

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