C-Suite Insights 16th August 2021

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The future of work starts now




The pandemic instigated an astonishing acceleration of the digitalisation process, transforming the business landscape. As with all sea-change advances, however, leaders will need to strike a balance between the huge opportunities offered by an “always-on” virtual world and the need to manage employee wellbeing and preserve a healthy organisational culture. The pandemic has also laid bare the need for stronger and more authentic human leadership.


To tackle this era-defining issue, this publication gathers wide-ranging perspectives from multiple stakeholders, including business leaders, non-governmental organisations, entrepreneurs, technologists, academics and experts. Contributors include:

  • Lynda Gratton, professor of management practice at the London School of Business and renowned future-of-work expert.
  • Thierry Baril, chief human resources officer at Airbus.
  • Gloria Chen, chief people officer at Adobe.
  • Kelly Palmer, chief learning and talent officer at Degreed.


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Strategies to break down silos


Harvard Business Review


Collaborating across departments can be a struggle. It’s common for individuals of different disciplines to be disengaged in a group meeting, instead of contributing to a cohesive purpose and team. In fact, siloes have only gotten more prominent since the pandemic began, as the circles of who we collaborate with have gotten smaller. And in response, the manager of the overall group tends to become the hardest working person in a meeting.


But you can change these dynamics in your collaborative meetings. There are strategies you can use to get people talking. First, become comfortable with being uncomfortable, especially in silence. Set meeting expectations in advance - and ensure participation. Ask the right questions to generate interaction. Introduce response data into the meeting, so attendees are aware of participation. Bridge intersections between departments. Finally, offer a variety of ways to interact, including digital options.


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Three keys to building a more skilled post pandemic workforce


McKinsey & Company


Many companies face large, and growing, skills deficits. A few companies approach skill building in a more integrated way - and are quietly gaining an edge on rivals.


According to research, 58% of organisations said that closing skills gaps has become a higher priority since the pandemic began, and 69% said their companies engage in more skill building than they did before the crisis.


Intriguingly, the skills companies prioritise most are leadership and managing others, critical thinking and decision making, and project management. This suggests that in addition to wanting to be more employee centric, organisations are still coming to grips with the new ways of working forced on them by the virus.


This article highlights three principles drawn from best practices that can serve as useful touchpoints for any organisation aspiring to start building its own more resilient, future-ready workforce.


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