The Modern Leader

Social sciences, humanities, engineering, mathematics

How can you become a better leader? Wonder what it takes or how to go about doing it? Modern leaders are bred from more diverse backgrounds than ever before. A common misconception is that leaders need established degrees and MBAs, are male and traditionally from similar backgrounds, but the world is changing.

Great leaders are made from all kinds of components.

But new statistics show that social sciences and education in liberal subjects is starting to dominate fields of leadership. A recent survey in Inside Higher Ed suggests that “leaders of a range of organizations internationally (including the United States) are most likely to have a degree in the social sciences, with 44 percent of leaders holding such a credential.”

It is believed accommodating for open mindedness and the ever changing modern world is required for running any kind of organisation. Rebecca Hughes, director of education at the British Council, said the results of the survey show the potential flaws of assuming everyone should study professionally oriented subjects, which may have been deemed essential in the past.

social sciences, modern leader, leadership

But it’s also likely that this will have changed in another 30 years, with an emergence of demand for tech and STEM qualified leaders as well as a resurgence of on the job training and apprenticeships. taking a different approach to traditional standards and the willingness to see leadership in a different light is the way forward. 

Never mind how your leaders got there, some factors are inescapable for good leadership. A good leader creates emotional safety for their team, combining the dichotomy of motivation and patience. Creating an environment that your team will thrive in, and take responsibility when things go wrong are aided by being approachable and proactive about creating solutions to problems your business will inevitably face. 

Look at leaders you admire and begin to identify what they are truly made of. Even if they do have a certain education or background, what are the attributes that actually serve them in their position?

Rebecca Hughes also said “The world needs leaders who can handle complexity and give diverse perspectives on the challenges we all face,” she said. “Globally, we need to go beyond a simple ‘two cultures’ binary outlook these days and as this research suggests, it is those with backgrounds that enable them to draw from multiple cultural reference points, and the academic training that encourages them to explore the human dimensions behind empirical data, who have tended to succeed and reach positions of leadership.”

Being able to identify factors that develop good leaders is important in larger organisations; international experience seems to have significance in other cultures, by being open minded to other cultures and taking reference from the systems that are most effective, you benefit. Leaders from Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Egypt were most likely to have had international experience (71 percent), with 55 percent reporting that they had studied overseas, 48 percent having worked overseas and 32 percent having done both. 


Here at Amodigo, we truly believe that leadership is not based on one’s level of academic qualification, but instead the willingness to learn and to be open to adaptation. 

Amodigo provides world class training in leadership and management, so you can become a better leader of today. 

Visit for information on Leadership and Management courses designed for current and emerging leaders.