“Young leaders are leading faster growing organizations.” After reading an article featured on Carey Nieuwhof’s blog, we thought we’d dive in and learn a little more about this trend.


It goes against what most people would assume about age (it’s often thought that older age = more success = growth), but many are noticing a “younger leader trend” so we want to break it down and see if we can glean some of the characteristics of the younger leaders to learn what components might be missing in organizations that are led by older leaders.


But first, hear us out. We by no means think that all “older” leaders are leading unsuccessful or stagnant organizations. And for the most part, the age differences between these different generations speak more to the stage of life and what accompanies that, as opposed to the thought that young leaders are simply “better.” So let's dive into what characteristics allow for younger leaders to lead thriving organizations. 


Characteristics of older leaders often encompass:

  • Stable
  • Closed
  • Routine
  • Comfort
  • Complacency

According to this article, these lead to: IRRELEVANCE (ouch)


Characteristics of younger leaders often encompass:

  • Risk-taking
  • Open
  • Adventurous
  • Transition
  • Fewer personal responsibilities that limit their time

According to this article, these lead to: INNOVATION


It’s only natural to have the tendency to slip into complacency after you’ve worked for years and years to get something off the ground. However, if you’re leading a nonprofit or ministry, it’s important to continue sharpening yourself and assessing the health and state of your organization as you continue making an impact on the world.


Here are 3 questions to ask yourself to help you identify whether or not you are sitting in comfort as opposed to pushing the limits toward innovation.


  1. Am I protecting my job (because of income, authority or identity)?
  2. Am I protecting the jobs of my staff and therefore placing their employment stability over launching new initiatives to reach people or inspire change?
  3. Do I have an underlying fear of making deep changes because of the establishment of the organization may revolt?

If you answered yes to these questions, it may be time to shock the system. It’s never too late, and you can start by taking some small steps toward heightened innovation. Here are 3 tips to start inviting in elements that will inspire new growth and energy despite age:


  • Surround yourself with more young leaders.
  • Put yourself in environments to be challenged.
  • Get out of the weeds of the day-to-day.

If your organization needs help rejuvenating growth and momentum, you are a perfect candidate for a StratLab. Our team of strategists will work with you throughout the day to uncover obstacles of growth, opportunities to pursue, and energize your team toward success and impact. If you’re interested in learning more about StratLab, click here or contact us here.

Digital Growth Strategies