Future of Work 2019: What the data tells us and how to apply it to your organisation

How do you run a better business that drives outcomes for the business and for your employees? How do you know what is working and what isn’t? How can you tell how your organisation compares to those in your industry? 

These questions led the GOIP to publish their annual Future of Work report every year. Future of Work allows you to glean insights into the processes of hundreds of businesses like yours from across the world to see what is impacting who, and why. 

Learning from your own actions and those of others provides great insight into how you can improve your overall outcomes. 

This year’s report comprises answers from 1000 talent managers across a range of industries and over 25 different countries.

Here we’ll unpack the three biggest insights we think will be affecting organisations like yours in the next 12+ months, and how you can make them work to your advantage.

1. Change is on people’s minds

In 2019, embracing change entered the top five on the list of most valued employee skills for the first time. It actually entered the top two – coming second only to collaborationThis shows us that organisations are experiencing change more than in the past, and are seeking employees who are able to handle it effectively. 

While the report showed this to be particularly important for larger organisations, overall six in every ten talent managers say adapting to change is an overarching issue and priority. 

Interestingly, the other top five valued skills are also essential for embracing change. Collaboration, communication, and leadership were all included, and are all required for teams to move through periods of disruption. 

What this means for you: 

Change is happening across all businesses, in all industries. Its likely rapid organisational change is here to stay as business, technology, and world economies continue to shift.  

Therefore, investing in both new employees with existing change management skills and training existing employees to gain these skills will assist you to:  

  • Limit business disruptions during periods of change 
  • Improve the skills and value of employees 
  • Improve retention by empowering employees to withstand change

2. Coaching is a beneficial but underutilised resource  

There were no new additions in this year’s report when it came to skill development. In fact, the results of the 2019 report were nearly identical to the last five years. 

Coaching continues to be an effective way to develop employees, judging by the prominence of three coaching activities on the list of most effective activities:  

  • training managers to become internal coaches 
  • one-to-one coaching by external coaches 
  • coaching programs for high potentials 

However, with survey responses also establishing that insufficient manager coaching skills is one of the top five people challenges, it seems that many businesses aren’t effectively implementing the coaching resources. 

What this means for you: 

The popularity of coaching across consecutive years shows us it is effective and safe option to invest in and work on. 

If you’re running internal coaching, you want to ensure those coaches are coaching well. External coaching is becoming more favourable, and can be used to advantage en masse, or to bring internal coaches up to scratch. 

3. Brand strategy and recruitment are intrinsically linked  

Two thirds of respondents in the 2019 Future of Work report stated that they have an employer brand strategy. Yet most organisations (particularly smaller ones) state that its purpose is to position in market, rather than for talent acquisition.  

In fact, only 18% reported brand strategy is used for recruitmentand 6% for retention. 

This might not seem abnormal. However, it becomes interesting when we look at the fact that recruitment and retainment were in the top three people management challenges organisations are facing. 

What this means for you: 

Brand strategy is important for positioning your organisation in the market and with your existing and potential customers. However, it can also be effectively used to attract and retain talent. 

A quarter of larger organisations are already doing this, but it can be said there is an advantage to be had to consider employees when building or tweaking your brand strategy. Kill two birds with one stone. 

Turning data into action:

Future of Work 2019 gives an unprecedented look into the current work environment. When we combine all the data together, we can see what challenges our organisations will face in the near future.  

Utilising these findings to update your current practices can help prepare your organisation and your employees to not only adapt, but prosper in the face of change. 

Sometimes, it can be hard to make these changes from the inside without full visibility. Choice Career Services have been working with organisations for years to help them strategize and upskill to keep up and exceed within their industries 

If you haven’t already, you can read the full GOIP Future of Work report here. If you’d like more information about the report, or about how you can action some of the findings into real change in your organisations, click here to talk to Choice Career Services. 

For further advice on making the change, click here to contact Choice Career Services.

Can we really manage the pace of change?

It’s a game-changing question. And traditional top-down leadership is no longer the answer.

It certainly seems that “change is the new black”, and certainly the new normal. The companies that will not only survive but thrive during this new era are those that can shift their thinking.

If you want to successfully adjust to this ‘new normal’, it’s time to switch your mindset from “change management” to“changing the way we manage”.

 

Four crucial tips for making the shift

1. Build trust now

Without foundational behaviour of a cohesive team, none of the rest is even truly possible. As Patrick Lencione insists, “Trust can only happen when team members are willing to be completely vulnerable with one another.

There is confidence among team members that their peers’ intentions are good and that there is no reason to be protective or careful around each other.

2. Create team agreements

Then stick to them. Team agreements go beyond fluffy value words framed on the walls of the office. They pinpoint specific ways team members agree to behave, and what the team agrees to do when any one of the members falls short in upholding the agreements.

This drives accountability away from “top-down” management and towards peer-to-peer responsibility. If there are one or two bad seeds who consistently hold the rest of the team back, having a peer or two call them out and possibly stop inviting them into various projects is likely to be a very powerful management tool.

3. Insist on and reward collaboration

No one person is as smart as the collective whole, and, after all, you hired smart people to get great work done. Get them together, give some direction, and get out of their way to get great work accomplished.

Rod Collins, author of Wiki Management: A Revolutionary New Model for a Rapidly Changing and Collaborative World, describes it in this way: “Top-down hierarchies are designed on the premise that an organization’s intelligence resides in a select number of star performers who leverage their expertise through the power to direct and control the work of others.

Self-organized peer-to-peer networks, on the other hand, are built upon the principle that an organization’s intelligence resides in the diversity of its members who leverage their collective knowledge through the power to connect and collaborate with each other.” In short, think network and lattice organization charts versus the linear top-down models of the past

4. Sharpen the organization’s focus on the customer

Supply-chain-driven organizations focus on producing 5 million widgets a day and shipping them around the globe within 24 hours. But if the widgets aren’t the right colour or don’t fit with customers’ existing widgets, who cares how many and how fast?

In our culture of “change is the new normal,” the customer’s power of choice is king (or queen) and ultimately supersedes the organization’s power to produce. The nimble organizations are those that build their people operations and systems to respond to and even stay ahead of fickle customer wants.

Change your approach, change your results

If traditional managers want their organizations to have the capacity to change as fast as the world around them, they will need to embrace the new reality that managing great change is only possible if they change how they manage.”–Rod Collins.

It’s rather ironic that through all the change they instigate, the management team (and their approaches) can be the hardest to change.

If your organisation is looking for a way to keep up with the pace of change through changing the way you manage, engaging with a professional can go a long way to getting you on the right track.

Choice Career Services specialises in innovative change management. We help businesses deal with many different types of organizational change through avenues that are successful and sustainable.

What is your organization doing to change the way it manages versus continuing to implement “change management” initiatives?

For further advice on making the change, click here to contact Choice Career Services.

What difference can a year make? How the Future of Work has changed your work future

Humans are by nature curious creatures –and it’s no different when it comes to work environments. In fact, the competitive environment of business means the opportunity to know what is happening with your competitors, in your industry and in business in general is hard to resist.

The OIGP Future of Work Study provides unprecedented insights into the management of thousands of businesses worldwide, thanks to the yearly survey carried out by HR and General Management roles in a range of industries across the globe.

This information allows you to see how you stack up against others –and helps you determine how to improve on things like talent acquisition, training and engagement.

your work environment and priorities have changed –and how you’ve invested in your talent over the last year to create positive change.

Future of Work 2018 –what did we learn?

Change is a challenge

Across the board, attracting and hiring new talent was a struggle in 2018. But it was closely followed by adapting to change. Regardless of your industry, many workplaces are being affected by an increase and frequency of change and disruption. Internal teams often find change difficult to manage and approach it blindly, which demonstrates a potential to focus on this as a point of improvement.

The top five challenges also included retaining talent and employee engagement, which go hand in hand –lose one, and you’ll lose the other.

The power of people persons

We’ve spoken about the challenge of attracting talent –but for you, what does ‘talent’ look like? 2018 survey results show that far more than anything else, businesses are looking for leadership agility and the ability to coordinate with others. People-based skills are becoming more and more desirable as historically important technical skills can now be more easily accomplished through technological advancements.

The popularity of these skills can also be attributed back to the culture of change, and the need for employees to be able to adapt to it.

Traditional development still reigns

The more things change, the more they stay the same. While in some areas we see traditional preferences subsiding, within employee development, traditional methods still reign supreme.

In 2018 internal leadership development programs were still the most favoured way to develop the talent of employees.

However, a growing favour towards adopting coaching as a development tactic has continued to grow steadily over the last few years –hinting at a change in approach for many businesses.

What will 2019 bring?

It’s not simple to say –while there have been few dramatic shifts over the last few years, the top priorities often change position and hint at new trends each year.

While we’ll have to wait another month to see the results, we have a few predictions:

  • Change management will continue to be both a priority and a struggle, and businesses will start looking for a new way to manage it
  • Engaging professional, external assistance to adapt to change will be explored further
  • Coaching will continue to become a more valued and popular form of employee development.

If you’re interested in re-examining the 2018 report in full details, you can find it here.

If you want to know how your experiences compare and learn more those in your industry, you still have time to take part in this year’s survey.

Once the report is complete, you’ll be able to access a copy to help you determine how best to attract, retain and manage your talent for 2020.

If you would like more information on The Future of Work, or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact Choice Career Services by clicking here. If you feel your organisation would benefit from a direct consultation with us, you can reach me on +61 3 9326 4884.

Effective managers do these 3 things

As a manager, you are in a tough spot. At times, it can feel like you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place.

On one hand, you must understand, support and ensure your team’s share of the organisation’s goals are achieved, no matter what. And, on the other hand, you must understand and support your team members to ensure they have what they need (such as information, resources, buy-in from senior management) to achieve the goals that have been assigned to them.

When things are going well – team members are happy and engaged; the organisation is hitting its goals, making money – the burden on managers can more easily be carried.

However, inevitably, things get bumpy, and managers must be the bearer of “bad news” (such as implementing expense reductions, providing negative feedback, telling senior management a mistake has been made or that a key goal will be missed).

Three steps to great management

It is precisely at these rocky times that managers can make a withdrawal from the bank of goodwill (a rainy-day fund, if you will) that was built up during the “good times.”

The time spent building and nurturing mutual respect and trust yields short- and long-term benefits. That is why it is critical to do the following three things, every day:

#1: Understand

Everyone has priorities. Organisations do too. It is critical to understand what is important to the people that work with you and what is important to the organisation in which you and your team work.

This is not stagnant; rather, it is fluid; it can change in a moment’s notice due to internal and/or external factors. Check in often with your people and your senior management to ensure your perception of the priorities matches reality.

#2: Communicate

This goes beyond staff meetings and one-on-one meetings. Effective communication requires an “outside-in” mindset. Anything you communicate will be filtered through a person’s and/or an organisation’s priorities.

You may be trying to communicate something that is very important; however, if what you’re communicating does not correlate to your audience’s priorities, then you will have a difficult time getting your audience to engage and do what you need them to do.

#3: Connect

Managers are at the crossroads between their teams and senior management. You are an advocate for your team as well as an advocate for the organisation. To do both effectively, connect your team’s priorities with the organisation’s priorities.

Your team members should feel they and their needs are a priority of the organisation; likewise, senior management should feel that your team understands and is engaged in the organisation’s priorities. Managers are the key link in connecting these two together.

 

Make the most of your position

While difficult, being an effective manager can be very rewarding. Both sides will appreciate your hard work, understanding and advocacy, and they will reward you with their respect and trust.

I would love to hear about your experiences as a manager and what challenges you have faced and what you found to be effective in overcoming them.

For more information on how you can upskill new managers to thrive in their new role, contact Choice Career Services by clicking here. We understand that helping your managers succeed can be quite a personal process, so if you feel your organisation would benefit from a direct consultation, you can reach me on +61 3 9326 4884.

This blog was adapted from Chris Medici’s original article ‘Effective Managers Do These Three Things’.  Chris is Principal of Medici Consulting Services, Inc., a branding, marketing and communications consulting business. He has more than 25 years of professional experience, encompassing a diverse range of sectors and markets including government, health care, law, financial services, and energy.

The value of engaging quality career transition support

A person’s career is a cornerstone of their life. Whether you live to work or work to live, your job becomes an integral part of who you are – and an essential part of your overall wellbeing.

However, sometimes organisations are forced to restructure, causing anxious moments for all staff. Not only do redundancies directly affect exiting staff members and the manager responsible for facilitating the exit, but they can also have an indirect effect on the remaining team’s morale and engagement.

How to successfully manage disruption, and the importance of staying focused on your people

In a world where disruption in the workplace is rapidly becoming the new norm, prioritising the management of people is now more critical than ever.

Let’s take the big retailers as an example. Around the world, retail giants are facing huge amounts of disruption by new and more innovative online retailers.