The new year and new decade are here and while no one can predict the future, it’s clear that we can expect uncertainty. Transformation is becoming the new normal in business, and with that brings change and ambiguity.
Whether it be shifting demographics, AI and emerging tech becoming more prevalent, or increased emphasis on employee engagement, changes lie ahead. Welcoming change and uncertainty, rather than bracing for it, will be the difference between thriving or just surviving.
The most important thing businesses can do in turbulent times is increase their ability to adapt to change. However, many organizations lack talent that have the right skills. A recent study from IBM reveals that only “41% of organizations have the people skills and resources required to execute their business strategy.”
To be an organization that embraces uncertainty, employees need to be both agile AND resilient. Unfortunately, most people are not as resilient as they think. In a recent study, “83% of Americans polled thought they had high levels of mental and emotional resilience, when in fact 57% scored as resilient.”
These 5 workplace trends will have increasing importance in the year to come. Read on to understand why resilience is such an important component of these trends.
Digital: Digital transformation continues to evolve the workplace. AI, advanced analytics and emerging technologies are key for 2020. Employees not only need the skills to understand and implement these new technologies, but need to be able to cope with the changes they bring to job roles and to the business. By focusing on agility and resilience, employees will be able to quickly adapt and have the right mindset for innovative thinking.
Manager as a coach: AI has the potential to reduce the administrative burden on managers and fundamentally change responsibilities. What does this mean? Managers have the opportunity to redefine their role. Oracle’s recent study revealed that more people trust robots over their own manager. But the research also identified several areas where the manager, not the robot, has the potential to make an impact. Improving emotional intelligence, including understanding feelings, coaching, evaluating performance and problem-solving is a big opportunity for managers to impact the business. Targeting resilience will help managers improve their EQ and increase their chances of success.
Wellbeing: “Life is just too easy,” said no one ever. Life comes with many challenges, both on a personal level and in the workplace. As a result, investing in employee wellbeing is a growing trend for businesses. “We’ve been on a wellbeing journey for some time. At PwC, we frame wellbeing around physical, mental, emotional and spiritual elements. So we have been talking about these elements of wellbeing and how we can manage each of them effectively as a source of energy, and the things we can do deliberately to manage and cultivate our energy in a world where demand exceeds capacity,” said Michael Fenlon, Chief People Officer at PwC. An important part of an effective wellbeing initiative is equipping employees to overcome adversity quickly and smoothly. Resilience training and activities that empower individuals with a holistically healthy mind and body are the solution.
Employee experience: In today’s market, talent is scarce and candidates have their pick of employers. While traditional factors such as salary and benefits are important, intangible benefits such as culture and opportunities for growth are becoming increasingly important. To improve team interactions and performance, companies are investing in training that identifies strengths and weaknesses. Equipping people and teams to be ready for whatever the work world throws their way is a science that requires robust insights that guide the organization on what’s needed next, and when done correctly is a win-win.
Mental health: Historically a taboo topic, it’s now a growing trend for employees to want their employer to address mental health. A study by Mind Share Partners, SAP, and Qualtrics reveals that people want their employers to be more open and accepting and provide clear access to resources, without fear of retribution. One of the top ways to achieve this is to invest in education. Employees must be educated on how to handle difficult conversations and arming them with baseline knowledge of mental health issues is a great start for changing how organizations address mental health.
As change and chaos settle in as the norm of today’s workplace, it’s unmistakable that this ability to not only own how we react in times of stress, but be better because of it will continue to play an important role throughout the next decade and beyond. The question is, what comes next for organizations looking to rely on resilience? A good first step is figuring out what to look for, and knowing that help comes in many forms, not just training, and can be delivered to employees that need it the moment it matters most.
Download the ebook, “Ready or at Risk: 6 Workplace Personas that Uncover Who’s Who” to understand who’s at risk and how you can help each persona build resilience amid change.