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Future Trends in Leadership & Management: Shifting Priorities

Find out what the future may hold for business in our brand new research, published today, ‘Future Trends in Leadership & Management – shifting priorities’, where we explore how leadership and management might evolve to respond to our rapidly changing business environment.

The pandemic has shaken up business priorities and many predict that it will have a lasting influence on the future direction of organisations. Covid-19, as well as the rapid development of digital technologies, Brexit and environmental issues are all catalysts for an anticipated change in priorities in the next five to 10 years: when it is predicted that innovation and more compassionate leadership will take centre stage, moving away from the current priority of compliance with rules and procedures.

The research found:

  • Overall, the biggest priority for the leaders and managers of organisations currently, is ensuring compliance with rules and procedures (26%)
  • In the next five to ten years, leaders and managers predict that innovation will become the most important priority (33%)
  • Currently, 34 per cent of third sector organisations prioritise people over profit, compared to 16 per cent of private organisations and 11 per cent of public organisations.
  • At the moment, small organisations are more likely to prioritise people before profit (29%).
  • In the next five to 10 years, both third sector (28%) and private sector (20%) leaders see a shift in the prioritisation of people before profit. 
  • In the next decade, both small (27%) and (20%) in medium sized organisations, believe they will put people over profit.


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Our Organisation

The Institute of Leadership & Management is the professional membership body for an active, international community of over 40,000 leaders, managers, coaches and mentors – but we are much more than a professional body. We create world–class tools and resources to help unlock individual and business potential, deliver award–winning e–learning, and undertake practical research to support, develop and inspire great leadership everywhere.

We are a registered charity and governed by a board of trustees. The Institute of Leadership & Management was founded in 1948, and reclaimed its independent status as a professional body in 2016, after 15 years as part of the City & Guilds Group building the market-leading ILM qualifications. This return to independence has enabled The Institute to become closer to its members, better support their leadership development, produce cutting–edge research, evidence–based learning resources and to campaign more effectively for great leadership everywhere.

The Institute maintains a strategic relationship with ILM to benefit all our learners, but The Institute should not be referred to as ILM.

Our Spokespeople

John Mark Williams - CEO

CEO John Williams is a problem solver and strategist who joined The Institute from a career in international business and leadership development across the UK, Europe, Middle East, Far East and North America.

John is a passionate advocate of servant leadership and deeply curious about emergent strategy, predictive analytics, punctuated equilibrium and other baffling business things – he is fascinated by the prospects for artificial intelligence and the future of work.

John holds an MBA from the University of Northumbria and has been guest lecturer in strategy and international business at universities in the UK and Europe for over two decades.

He has appeared on radio and television in the UK and overseas, and has been published in titles including Huffington Post, City AM, Entrepreneur Country Online and others.


Expertise - John provides expert commentary, analysis and information on any aspect of workplace leadership and management issues. This includes:


  • Social mobility

  • Cross–functional fertilisation

  • Agility • Leadership skills gap

  • Diversity and inclusion

  • Veterans finding employment in civilian organisations

  • Leadership learnings from sport


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Our Mission

Our mission is to inform, inspire and impact great leadership everywhere through our award–winning leadership development tools such as MyLeadership, an extensive original research and events programme, leadership capability recognition, and leadership programme accreditation.

Our Members

Leadership is a journey, not a destination. We recognise that leadership takes place across all levels in an organisation. This is why we work with all leaders wherever they are on their leadership journey, from first– time or aspiring leaders, to C–suite managers.

We’re passionate about inspiring great leadership across all sectors; from healthcare to finance and not–for profit organisations to universities, we work with members and organisations spanning a wide range of sectors to help them, or their employees, become better leaders.


Our Facts

  • The Institute of Leadership & Management was founded in 1948 and celebrates 75 years of inspiring great leadership everywhere in 2023
  • We have an active international community of over 40,000
  • We host hundreds of events, webinars, seminars, workshops and conferences each year
  • We produce authoritative, well–respected, high-quality research reports
  • Our five Dimensions of Leadership – Authenticity, Vision, Achievement, Ownership and Collaboration – help leaders to achieve successful outcomes in the private, public or voluntary sector