Written by Mona Hassan
One of the first things to notice with our new ways of working is that New Work is not just an organizational shift. It’s more a skillset shift.
1. What are we observing?
Hybrid. Remote. Digitalization. Our workplace of the future and maybe even of today. These are the keywords often used when we try to describe WHAT the next era of work could look like. A new era that has been introduced around the world with an accelerated speed through the 2020 pandemic. While there won’t be a one-size-fits-all answer, one thing we would suggest is that a new way of working will require all of us to gain new sets of skills. Many of them being skills that are especially innate to us humans, such as adaptability, resilience, creativity, learnability.
2. How may we best adapt to these observations
Every change you plan and implement for your organization affects humans that will need to adapt to that change. It’s not just a shift in organizational structures. It’s a shift in the skillsets, toolsets, and mindsets for all the people of your organization.
So how can you and your team choose to prepare for that shift?
Let’s have a look and explore some examples:
2.1 The art of cultivating an open mind.
‘Change is the only consistent.’ One way to keep an open mind is by realizing it might be stuck in limited perspectives:
Get out of your comfort zone. And make it a routine. To see what’s going on outside your ‘box’ you actually need to make the effort to get out there.
Connect with people you’d usually not speak to. A leader on the other side of the world might face the exact same challenge as you do. However, due to his/her cultural background, they might look at things through a completely different lens.
2.2 Activate your creative skills.
- Creativity is the opposite of habit. Challenge your daily habits e.g. brush your teeth or write in your daily journal by using your less dominant hand.
- Creativity cannot be forced. It happens spontaneously. Ever wondered why our most creative ideas come when taking a shower? Calm your mind, do things that help you switch off e.g. daily meditation, sports, play with your kids.
2.3 Apply the Michael Jordan non-failure attitude.
‘I have been entrusted to take the game’s winning shot, and I missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.’
In this ever-changing world we need to learn how to learn again – How to un-learn and how to re-learn. There is no learning without trying and making lots of mistakes on our learning journey.
- Recognize and celebrate your and your team’s mistakes. You can always ask “What could we learn from this?” every time you or your team recognize something that went wrong in reference to the outcome you are looking for. If this feels very alien to start with, introduce exercise from improvisation theater in your next team-building event. It’s a fun way to help your employees embrace failure.
These are obviously just a few examples. What we truly desire is to hear from YOU. How do YOU think you and your team can adapt some of the critical skillsets, toolsets and mindsets needed to transition into this new era of work?
2.4 Questions for you to work with and to add to …
As always, a good start of any journey is to ask some questions that you would like to find the answers to on your journey of discovery – How may you want to kick off your discovery of practical adaptation to New Work? We will lead with a few examples that you can add to and together with your team you can start to find the answers that are most helpful for you:
- Imagine a team going from 1 freelancer and 9 permanent employees to the reverse. May that be a scenario that you should think through? Could this become real in some form for you and your team?
- How do you think of “hybrid” as a working model? What are possible benefits? What are obvious challenges? How may you answer these questions differently from an individual perspective, a team perspective and a full organizational perspective?
- How can you work with creativity in a hybrid or remote working environment?
- How can we maintain our social connectivity across our team and across our organization? What may be the 2-3 biggest challenges for you and your team related to social connectivity? How would you develop new ways to counter or mitigate these challenges?
- How may you find the questions that are most helpful for you to ask?