Tipping point for a new work model

Alison Maitland's picture

We had a rich and lively debate at Cass Business School on Future Work this week. Our panellists were asked: What will be the tipping point for organisations to adopt a new work model? Robert Phillips, CEO of Edelman EMEA, said: “Enlightenment and fear: the enlightenment of leaders who just get it, and the fear [of others] that ‘the world will get you if you don’t get the world’.”
Growing employee democracy will also help. “The future of work is about ripping up the blueprint and asking people to help us find the best way to do things,” said Caroline Waters, Director of People & Policy at BT. The biggest barriers are attitudes at the top of organisations: “You’ve got a group of leaders with one model for success: it’s worked for them so where is the reason for them to change?” she said.
Leaders have got to wake up, Phillips said. “People who think they’re ‘in control’ are living in cloud cuckoo land. The long-term shift is from a control mentality to networks of influence. There’s a redefinition of values and leadership that’s going on.”
Henry Stewart, CEO of award-winning IT training company Happy, said sales and profits were directly linked to how happy employees are. The role of managers isn’t to tell people what to do, it’s “to make people feel good about themselves”.
We agree. Do you feel trusted? Inspired? Informed? In control? That's what people need in order to do their best work.

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