Future skills and current realities: How the psychological (Jungian) type of European business leaders relates to the needs of the future
How ready for the future are our business leaders? This paper addresses this question by drawing on two pieces of research. An international skills audit was carried out to ascertain if the skills needed by future business leaders would be different from the skills needed today; the results from 340 respondents are presented. These are compared with data on the Jungian type of over 8000 senior managers and executives taken from nine different European countries. Type was measured by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) instrument. The findings are used to identify challenges for the future. For example, although the audit suggested that skills such as the ability to empower others are likely to become increasingly important, people with the most common type preference amongst European senior managers (ESTJ) may, especially when under stress, have a particular tendency to want to make all the decisions themselves, without any input from others. The ways in which organisational psychologists and HR practitioners can employ psychological type to help leaders meet these challenges are briefly discussed.