WINNING THE 2020s
Every hundred fifty to two hundred years, forces of progress collide and something remarkable has emerged. The Ancient Greeks named these epochs: Kairos — times of dramatic peril where leaders who are tuned to change seize opportunity to shape the future. The 2020s will be a period of Kairos. Here are five steps to building an organisation that will thrive in the 2020s:
While most companies profess to have D&I programmes, only 25% of diverse employees believe they have benefitted. The growth of women in senior and board levels of leadership has stagnated over the past ten years. There has been little progress in gender diversity over the past ten years. The average share of women in leadership roles in big companies increasing only 1% from 26% to 27% between 2009 and 2018
But studies demonstrate a clear correlation between the diversity of management teams and an organisation’s degree of innovation. In addition those companies have higher EBIT and profit margins than companies with below-average diversity in their leadership teams
Achieving agility, innovation and resilience through diversity is crucial for succeeding in the 2020s. However D&I remains an under leveraged opportunity. D&I must become a business imperative. Leaders need to establish the workplace that allows people to embrace and support diversity initiatives. Like innovation has to be part of an organisations DNA for it to be sustainable, so to must D&I become part of the social fabric of organisations.
The 2020s will be a decade of disruption as technology, geopolitical and social trends collide to create new organisational and societal realities. The leaders who are tuned to change will seize opportunity. Inspiring a strong sense of purpose and delivering meaningful benefits to all stakeholders will be vital.
Leaders must amplify distinct human capabilities and discover synergies inherent in human–machine collaboration. That means fashioning a bionic enterprise, one that augments technology and people in ways that bring out the best in each.
Investing in a culture of innovation and embedding this within the organisation’s DNA as a natural manifestation of how things are done will build a strong foundation. Embracing diversity especially cognitive and gender, will speed-up and strengthen results.
None of this is easy, but the result will be organisations that are able to learn, unlearn and relearn faster than their rivals, thrive in the face of uncertainty, and continually evolve to deliver remarkable results.