We’re currently experiencing a seismic shift in the way we work. Leaders now have an extraordinary opportunity to reconsider, redefine and reinvent how teams work, how they engage with them and how businesses operate.
The COVID-19 pandemic has completely altered our view of the world and the workplace. Consequently, new leadership is critical. Nearly half of all Australians in employment during COVID-19 are working from home, according to data for the Australian Bureau of Statistics. It’s likely that this number is much higher in Victoria due to Stage 4 restrictions.
This new leadership needs to provide purpose. The intrinsic values and capabilities of a company have never been more important and great leaders will harness the power of these values to reassure teams and create a compelling vision for the future.
The speed with which this disruption has occurred has been extraordinary, as has been the way in which leaders and businesses have had to adapt. Almost overnight, many businesses have transformed not only their operating models but also their ways of working in order to maintain continuity and embrace the new parameters of remote working and virtual teams.
Leaders have now had to reconsider how they manage and lead through this crisis
According to Eduardo Nofuentes, this is all about Leaders recalibrating their mindsets and leaving their egos at the door. Eduardo is Founder and CEO at Neu21, a leading business consultancy that uses agile and lean mindsets, practices and tools to improve the way teams and organisations work.
With a vision of ‘Making work better for everyone’, Neu21’s guiding principles in enabling teams to collaborate differently and so transform their culture are reshaping Ways of Working (collaboration), adopting Lean Management Practices (what work gets done) and changing the System of Work (how the company operates).
The future of work, Eduardo believes, is all around taking a human-centred approach to work with more engagement, more visibility and more transparency. For him agile means trust, empowering teams to work efficiently and being given the opportunity to contribute and lead.
‘Anything that you do is about putting trust in the employee’
In addition, leaders also need to be transparent. They will be realistic about the business environment, will stay calm in a crisis and provide hope.
Importantly, leaders need to be present, visible and authentic. The challenges presented by information and misinformation now mean leaders need to be a source of truth. They will provide regular updates and be consistent in their messaging and communication.
As for the future of work. Well, that’s being shaped by two powerful forces – the increasing adoption of AI in the workplace and the expansion of the workforce to include interim talent.
These forces promise to change not only the workplace and the workforce but the very nature of work itself.