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Summary of May Program Featuring Josh Bersin

Tuesday, May 23, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Marty Jordan
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In May’s program, Josh Bersin, founder and Principal at Bersin by Deloitte, invited us to delve into the disruptive shifts leaders in the Digital Age must make – shifts in how we think, act, and react. 

Drawing insights from “Rewriting the rules for the digital age: 2017 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends,” Josh described the explosive growth of technology and the accelerating rate of change it has triggered. 


Contrary to optimistic expectations at the onset of the Digital Age, the rapid technology changes have led to overwhelm rather than increased productivity.  Leaders must teach employees and organizations how to fundamentally think and work differently.   It falls on the Human Resources function to equip leaders, by meeting people where they are with what they need, in real time, when they need it.


Ten far-reaching trends frame the top “rules” prime for rewriting:

  1. The organization of the future:  arriving now  - hierarchical organizations no longer represent how work gets done – work is now done through a network of teams, and we must enable that by intentionally reshaping the organization.
  2. Careers and learning:  real-time, all the time – we must apply design thinking to create learning experiences relevant to employee “personas” in an increasingly agile and mobile workforce.
  3. Talent acquisitionenter the cognitive recruiter – it’s time to shift away from ATS / HR-driven recruiting and embrace cognitive technologies such as AI, social collaboration, crowds, and the sharing economy to reach the right and the best match for our talent needs. 
  4. The employee experienceculture, engagement, and beyond – let’s broaden our focus from employee “engagement” to the integrated employee “experience,” addressing the employee experience holistically, con­sidering all contributors to worker satisfaction, engagement, wellness, and alignment – from the worker’s  point of view.
  5. Performance management: play a winning hand – it’s not about “getting rid of ratings,” it’s about agile goal management, real-time multi-directional feedback, and a focus on vitality that meets the needs of a network of teams in the digital age. 
  6. Leadership disrupted: pushing the boundaries – digital leadership requires dramatic shifts in how leaders think, act, and react.  We must change our leadership model and how we develop leaders to equip them to lead teams and partner with the broader ecosystems, apply in­terdisciplinary skills, innovate, and take risks.  
  7. Digital HR: platforms, people, and work  - we must redefine HR’s role as the team that helps management and employees rapidly transform and adapt to the digital way of thinking.  We must “be, think, and do” digital as we leverage modern HR platforms, engage people where they are, and work as innovative, strategic business partners.
  8. People analytics:  recalculating the route – in the words of our mobile apps, it’s time to “recalculate the route” with how we use data and analytics.    HR must focus on delivering “clean” multidisciplinary data and providing insights and predictions that drive business decisions and action.
  9. Diversity and inclusion: the reality gap – if today’s  digital organization operates as a network of teams and thrives on empower­ment, open dialogue, and inclusive working styles, it’s time to stop fooling ourselves about the state of diversity and inclusion in our organizations. Diversity and inclusion as a comprehensive business strategy must be woven into every aspect of the talent lifecycle.
  10. The future of work: the augmented workforce – the acceleration of artificial intelligence, machine learning, crowd sourcing, and the gig economy will force us to segment work into “essentially human” and “essentially automated or outsourced.”  The implications are far-reaching and include reframing careers, designing new ways of working and learning, reskilling the workforce, and tending to the employee and customer experience.

Phew.  So much to do!  Where to start?  Josh proposes HR begin by:

  1. Getting comfortable with the employee experience as a major focus area
  2. Taking a look at organization design and where it’s helping and where it’s hurting
  3. Becoming digital in how we think, act, and “are”
  4. Acting as one integrated HR organization to fuel the integrated employee experience

We look forward to continuing the dialogue with you in our September 12 day-long conference:  Transforming HR:  Emerging HR Roles & Capabilities.

Thank You Sponsors!


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