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3 Ways Globalization Has Changed Local Leadership

To be a Millennial is to have come of age in a rapidly developing technological landscape. One of the positive results of this has been to make the world a smaller place. We each have greater access to international marketplaces, communities, and relationships than at any other point in history. The rapid rise in globalization over the last 3 decades has created some unique challenges that come along with these benefits.

As Millennials are now taking positions of leadership across private and public sectors, it’s important to look at how this globalization affects the role on a local level. This is an era unlike any other to come before it. To have the most positive impact, we need to examine what it means to be an effective leader today and how contemporary approaches can help overcome hurdles.

We’re going to look at just a few of the ways globalization has changed local leadership.

Mutual Responsibility

The first aspect to consider about how globalization has impacted local leadership is a greater sense of mutual responsibility. As our world has become smaller and more connected, more of us have gained insights into the challenges faced by communities across the planet. We have access to evidence of not just how the ethics behind business operations and decisions have knock-on effects in our immediate vicinity but to citizens of far-flung countries and in strained socioeconomic positions. In this way, globalization has made it clear local leaders everywhere have to act in ways that prioritize high ethical, environmental, and social standards for the betterment of everyone.

This has become particularly evident during the COVID-19 pandemic. The need to mitigate the negative and often deadly consequences has required a great deal of cooperation between local and international healthcare leaders. The events have served to highlight how problems can move beyond national borders, resulting in consequences that are not just directly medical but economic, sociological, and political in nature. As such, local health leaders today have to focus on what other aspects of modern life can present similar global problems — obesity and mental health alongside other contagious pathogens. Their mutual global responsibility is to educate the public and share research and resources to make sure the consequences are limited.

Technological Expectations

There’s no doubt the development of our digital age has been a driving force behind globalization. The course of the last couple of decades has seen us reach a point at which most people have access to some form of advanced digital technology. However, from a local leadership perspective, this also means there are expectations to make certain their businesses, organizations, and communities are keeping up. Non-compatibility with the systems of others can result in being left behind as the rest of the world progresses.

This isn’t just evident in private companies’ imperative to remain commercially competitive. Local governments are looking for infrastructure to provide free wifi in public spaces or support fiber broadband to residential properties, or else see their communities fall behind and miss out on tourism and business visitors. Globalization has also served to showcase cities that use technology to make their public transport systems more efficient, greener, cheaper, and more efficient. It is clear tools like self-driving buses, elevated caterpillar trains, and electric vehicles can help to address the economic and social challenges faced by communities. As such, local leaders are increasingly expected to adopt and explore these to improve their citizens’ quality of life.

Emotional Intelligence

Globalization has made our fellow humans far more visible than at almost any other time in history. We have a real-time window on how individuals, communities, and marginalized populations are still experiencing a great deal of suffering. Our connections have created a shared experience in which similarities of challenges across borders are evident and forged a deeper understanding of the extent to which such issues impact lives. It has also resulted in a greater demand for global and local leaders alike to exhibit more emotional intelligence in their activities to help address these issues.

This isn’t just a case of addressing the big issues associated with racial inequality and poverty — although these are certainly important aspects. It’s also about bringing understanding of these elements into the day-to-day operations of the leadership role being played. It means approaching challenges with a sense of empathy rather than the aggression that has created toxic landscapes in the past. It means making genuine connections to build trust in a way that helps everyone involved to feel supported, heard, and empowered to succeed.


Globalization has been a powerful tool for our contemporary way of life and this is reflected in how it has changed local leadership. Millennials in leadership roles need to exhibit globally responsible activities and maintain high technological standards. Perhaps above all else, the challenges of the world we live in demands leaders that are emotionally intelligent and strive for the betterment of everyone they interact with.


Author Bio

Ainsley Lawrence is a freelance writer with an interest in topics related to how education, business, and technology intersect with the personal. She enjoys travelling to beautiful places and learning more about her cultural and environmental surroundings. You can connect with Ainsley on Twitter and Contently.




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