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Digital Leaders

This article provides the youth with the necessary information about the skills they need to have and the behaviour they need to follow to be able to succeed and help others succeed in the digital era.

Digital technology is transforming businesses, economies, and society, as well as our day-to-day lives, and the coming years will be a time of “Digital Leaders”. Around the world, leaders in different fields have already started to embrace the digital revolution and recognize the power of game-changing technology. 

“Every country needs a Minister of the Future,” said Saleforce’s founder and CEO Marc Benioff, at the World Economic Forum in Davos in the year 2020 and he was right. 

What is digital leadership?  

Digital leadership can be defined as a leader’s contribution to the transition of society towards knowledge and its growth in technology. Leadership must be driven by an attitude of openness and a genuine hunger for knowledge.  

In a society of knowledge, Information is key. So, what we do not know is as important as what we do know. In today’s world, power is not gained by expanding new territories or areas of influence but by gaining knowledge first then deepening and widening networks and connections, and this pushes the leaders to know their limits and know how to acquire missing knowledge. Moreover, a leader of the future is more like a community manager rather than an authoritarian. 


But what is your role? What are the qualities of the individual or leader that distinguish one person from another? 

Sometimes in our head we think that to be a digital leader seems far away and hard to imagine, so you need to check the below simple steps:  

  • To drive digital transformation, you should have a clear aspiration for your future, and learn how to articulate and talk about it, and discuss It. Also, you need a very strong vision for where you are going. You also want to strongly engage your peers in owning and then fleshing out that vision. And you need to have a very strong management in what capabilities you are going to develop so that you can keep the transformations going forward over and over again. 
  • You are an agent of change and this requires a high level of tolerance toward others. Therefore, you must be willing to lead and manage change within yourself first and then among others. 
  • You are the new shift and role model for other youth’s career orientation, and you should be able to explain the future of jobs and how the digital world affected business processes.  
  • You should be inclusive and think about how to reach the most underprivileged and encourage others to create processes to serve better and in a more humanistic way. 
  • Being a digital leader in our world means you should focus on certain subjects and new aspects such as digital skills, digital citizenship, digital interaction, digital safety, netiquette, and many other subjects.  


Digital Citizenship: 

Digital citizenship involves thinking, being, and acting responsibly online. It also involves how to think, be and work. Moreover, it involves critical thinking and not trusting everything you see or read on social media.  



The following are some rules that you could follow so that you follow Netiquette when online: 

  • Remember that there is a person on the other side:  The people you are interacting with online are real humans and not usernames or profile pictures. You should never say something to someone online that you would not say to him or her in person because it is against the values and ethics of society. Online interactions are always backed up and could serve as evidence against you.  
  • Be mindful of breaking the law: Illegal streaming of movies, illegal downloading of music, and copyright infringement are against the law. So, think carefully about what kind of a digital citizen you want to be! 
  • Be meaningful in your digital world: Post what it has meaning and is useful for others, and what can give them a smile, a beautiful memory, or interesting information or facts. Also, if you are an expert in a certain field such as science or sports, offer it to the online world but make sure to spread accurate information.  
  • Don’t neglect your online image: Don’t share personal or embarrassing things or experiences and ensure that you write clear sentences or messages and to use proper grammar. 
  • Don’t take it personally: In all debates whether offline or online, separate the problem from the person and don’t attack the person behind the profile by insulting them. Also, avoid inappropriate language and negative comments.  
  • Don’t abuse your power: If you are an administrator for any online community, make sure you do not abuse the privilege of access that your position may give you.  
  • Be compassionate: Forgive other people’s mistakes especially for the newcomers or people that have a tendency to trigger you negatively.   


Digital skills vs. Digital literacy  

Digital literacy includes a range of abilities, skills, and behaviors which not only show knowledge but also understanding of how things work in the digital world. The most common example is Facebook.  

On the other hand, someone who possesses the digital skill to create an account is not considered a digital literate unless they are at the very least able to recognize fake accounts, and know the harms caused by hacking attacks. 

The digital economy is rapidly transforming the employment landscape across industries, including financial services, health, entertainment, transportation, and of course, information and communication technologies (ICT). Millions of jobs requiring advanced digital skills will be created in the coming decade, but many countries are producing a shortfall of skilled workers to fill these jobs, while the digital economy requires a wide range of digital skills. These are skills that lead to specific outputs or are needed to perform jobs in the digital economy. These skills include: 

Basic digital skills:

They include web research, online communication, and the use of professional online platforms, and digital financial services. 

Mid-level digital skills:

These include digital graphic design and marketing, desktop publishing, and social media management, both for job and entrepreneurship opportunities.

Advanced digital skills:

skills necessary to create, manage, test, and analyze information and communication technologies. They relate to technology development, including coding, software and app development, network management, machine learning, big data analysis, the internet of things (IoT), cybersecurity, and blockchain technology.  

Soft skills: 

They include leadership, communication, teamwork, client focus, and more.  

Digital entrepreneurship: 

They are digital skills that are required by entrepreneurs, including online market research, strategic planning, and business analysis, all by using financing and crowdfunding platforms. 


If you want to move forward in life as someone that is living in a never-ending changing environment, in a world full of information, you might need to check your level of digital, soft, and entrepreneurial skills which will form a great starting point to be fully and digitally inclusive and a future leader to others.   

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Call to Action

Learn more about digital inclusion and assess whether you are a good digital citizen or not by taking the quiz linked below.

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