Skills required for Net-0

Developing leadership capabilities

Creating impact and change at the systems level involves specific skills, such as developing strategic thinking, planning and change management skills. It is critical for leaders to understand how to deliver change across systems. Collaboration is vital and it is important to communicate beyond traditional business boundaries.

There are a range of skills that can be developed to improve leadership. For example, you could set aside time to develop your storytelling or listening skills, or practice building trust with your team members. As you read this section of the notes, reflect on the key skill sets that will enable you to develop the confidence and resilience to drive change.

Two critical leadership capabilities that you can develop to lead transformation and drive a net zero transition are to improve your contextual insight and broaden your knowledge base. These capabilities involve:

  • analysing and understanding the science and data that informs trends that shape how businesses operate
  • developing the abilities to assess risks and opportunities
  • understanding the context of stakeholders
  • gaining insight into the evolving societal expectations for business
  • critically analysing innovative and transformative business practices
  • understanding how to deliver business performance and societal outcomes through innovative business processes, products and models
  • recognising the opportunities and capabilities that businesses have to create value beyond their own context.

(CISL, 2018)

Additionally, it is important that leaders continually develop and refine their self-awareness as well as empathy and respect for others (Korver, 2016). Developing the mindset and thinking skills necessary for leading change in complex systems involves:

  • adopting a systems-thinking approach
  • understanding the VUCA context and its complications
  • being able to adapt and evolve thinking
  • establishing short-term priorities and decisions with a view to the long term.

(CISL, 2018)

Pause and reflect:

Think about your own leadership responsibilities and capabilities and reflect on the following questions:

  • How can you connect your values with your organisation’s values?
  • How can you build a sense of responsibility for leading the change required to decarbonise business activities?
  • What steps can you take to clarify your personal role and develop key leadership capabilities to drive change?
  • What actions can you take to practice delivering the systems level changes required?

The interactive infographic explores various leadership capabilities and their alignment with the three-dimensional leadership framework. As you engage with the interactive infographic, you have the opportunity to rate your own leadership skills and reflect on your strengths and any areas where you could improve.

Interactive infographic 1: The three dimensions of effective leadership.

To download the transcript for the interactive infographic, right click here and choose “Save link/Target as”.

Leaders looking to drive organisational transformation and accelerate decarbonisation in their professional context should work on cultivating these capabilities to communicate effectively and encourage wider commitment to this vision. In Module 8, you also have the opportunity to consider who in your sphere of influence can support you in leading this transition.

Pause and reflect:

Think about the information you have engaged with in this set of notes. Can you identify what your own sphere of influence looks like in your professional context? Reflect on your own leadership strengths, skills and capabilities and consider your role in advocating for and leading decarbonisation in your own context.