Identifying future business leaders in your organization

Ensuring you have a reliable pipeline of future talent in your organization is key to future success. While the principle may be clear, turning it into a reality can be more difficult. The unpredictable human element can often make identifying and developing talent for your organization feel like something of a lottery. While some variables cannot be anticipated, there are ways to spot the people who may develop into successful leaders.

So how do you go about identifying the next generation of leaders in your organization?

Born or Made?

While a minority of great leaders will exhibit exemplary leadership qualities from the beginning of their careers, their aptitude is something that they will need to develop over time. To achieve this they will usually need a combination of the right attitude and a willingness to work hard. While some people may have a range of skills that could be utilized in a leadership role, they perhaps lack the drive to develop them. This is where training and mentorship play a pivotal role.

Identifying who has both the talent and the drive to get there is a critical skill that current business leaders need to develop to ensure the future sustainability of their organization.

Key Traits of Potential Leaders

While there is no one way to be an effective leader, successful leaders will often share several key traits. These include:

A Desire to Achieve

Firstly, your successful leaders of the future will exhibit a clear drive to achieve. In practical terms, this will mean clear ideas of what achieving will mean in career terms and how that translates into tangible goals. Are their goals credible and do they coalesce with your own organizational goals and requirements? You will also want to see what practical steps the individual takes to achieve those goals, such as accessing training or mentoring that can help them gain the necessary skills.


Great leaders tend to be flexible. They are open to new ideas and can respond quickly to developing situations. In an age of technological disruption, this quality will be crucial to the future success of any organization. While the exact architecture of the future marketplace is difficult to predict, ensuring you have people in place with insight and a willingness to act will be key.


An open, inquiring mind supports flexibility and adaptive leadership. At a time of rapid change existing and emerging leaders need to be constantly learning. They should seek out new developments, try to understand trends and be able to identify opportunities.


Communication is perhaps the most important aspect of effective leadership. Being able to communicate ideas and plans, inspire and motivate others and defuse conflict solutions is a must for the modern workplace. Effective communication is a skill that can be developed over time, and would-be leaders should prioritize acquiring advanced communication skills as part of their development strategy.


Successful leaders understand human nature and how to get the best out of people. They empathize with the challenges, goals and dreams of people in their team and can relate on a human level. Because they care, they inspire loyalty and a desire among their team to work harder for shared goals.

Effective leadership means keeping informed. Stay tuned through our socials and website for the latest information, podcasts, more blogs and upcoming events.

You might like this