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The Strategic Approach to Modern Work: Co-Creating Outside the Box

October 20, 2023

TRANSFORMING
WORK

WITH
SOPHIE WADE

The Strategic Approach to Modern Work: Co-Creating Outside the Box

The Strategic Approach to Modern Work: Co-Creating Outside the Box

Sophie Wade is a work futurist and strategist, author and authority on the Future of Work, instructor on Gen Z, empathy, and Future of Work skills, and host of this show. Sophie discusses modern work—what it is, why and how it is different and human-centric. She explains how to adapt to be prepared for the ongoing changes around and ahead of us, accelerated by AI. Sophie sets the landscape, describes enterprise needs, and why employees are the focus for the future. She shares the core principles of modern work and why practicing empathy is key.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

[00:45] Sophie wants to take stock of where we are and what’s ahead that we need to prepare for.

[01:27] Our environment is highly-digitalized and interconnected, generating fast-paced change.

[03:30] Artificial intelligence has become a top strategic priority for most businesses.

[04:19] Driven by technology, is your customer base changing, how you serve them, or how quickly you have to upgrade your products?

[04:49] To respond to marketplace demands, operations become more flexible and the nature of work evolves.

[05:52] The pandemic catalyzed us along a path we were already on.

[06:12] The impact of technology updates on employees needing frequently to upskill and reskill.

[07:07] Why enterprises need to create a skills inventory and be mapping every employee’s skills.

[07:28] Hierarchies have flattened for businesses to be more nimble.

[08:10] Non-linear careers must be planned and managed even when skills and roles are evolving.

[08:50] Internal talent marketplaces and cross organization relationships facilitate non-vertical career development.

[09:41] Why younger employees quit if they can’t easily move internally with their current employer.

[10:43] Jobs with high and low automation potential can be compared for skills matching to assess possible future transfers.

[11:53] How BCG consultants used GPT4 and completed more tasks faster and better!

[13:11] Why the Future of Work is tech-driven and talent-focused.

[13:54] Empathy is essential in modern work to ensure the emphasis is on people.

[14:38] Each business is different so there are principles of modern work to adapt appropriately.

[15:10] The core principles of modern work are: Learning, Intention, Flexibility, and Empathy.

[16:25] Why workers need to be creators.

[17:04] Thinking outside the box is critical and what the box symbolizes—before and now.

[17:45] A strong culture is essential, grounded by empathy and other timeless values.

[18:50] AI is likely to net out creating more jobs, but much will shift during the transition.

[19:10] What is the broader impact of encouraging your team to use of AI?

[20:11] Empathy can help us focus on progress rather than more debates about work locations.

[20:52] IMMEDIATE ACTION TIP: To start the transition to modern work, be curious and open-minded. Ask coworkers for ideas and recommendations and explore new possibilities. Curiosity primes you for learning, being flexible, and empathy about other’s viewpoints.

[21:27] Modern work IS different—adjusting for our new environment as well as enterprise and employee needs.

[22:17] The process of transformation is messy, but there are great benefits all round when we create and co-create together.

QUOTES

“These change that are upon us has been building in momentum for years already and causing strain within our fixed internal structures.”

“We have been transitioning for years already to modern work which is about flexibility—accommodating activities that are less linear, less routine, with more collaborative and cross disciplinary.”

“Numerous rigid layers of hierarchy have intentionally been reduced significantly in many cases to enable businesses to be more nimble and responsive.”

“Stronger relationships are critical to develop deliberately across organizations to permit non vertical career development, so that managers are willing to share one of their rising stars to another team or division.”

“For now, it is easier for employees to quit to advance their careers than move within their own organization.”

“The Future of Work is tech-driven and talent focused.”

“Empathy is essential in modern work—giving us each ability to understand other’s perspectives and connect with their experiences.”

“Everyone providing value to your business across your entire workforce needs to be a “creator”.”

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