How do Leaders drive value in an organisation? — Part 2
As mentioned in part 1 of this two-part article series, 2030 may seem like a while away, but companies that are looking to thrive in the future are already starting to reimagine what, where and how they can evolve to ensure they achieve their vision and strategy.
In part 1, I looked at several key themes about how Leaders currently operate, engage with people and succeed. I suggest you read this article if you haven’t already before continuing. With the themes already explored in mind, let’s consider critical trends in the workplace. After all, you are likely to encounter several key challenges as a People Leader now and in the future.
Burnout has always been a factor. However, I genuinely believe the pandemic has added another layer of stress, responsibility and trauma to the mix. We’ll talk more about trauma later. We’re increasingly living in a VUCA world — not just in the workplace but in our all-round environment. VUCA stands for volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguity.
The importance of safety
Social architecture is essential. Far more people are aware of and actively considering what they want and need from their workplaces. What our workplace community and space is like, is becoming increasingly important as is the type of work we do. Safety has become high on the list too. People want to be where they feel safe and secure during these uncertain times.
And then there’s trauma…
What is trauma? According to Dr Gabor Matte, trauma is not what happens to us; it’s what happens inside us. That means trauma is highly subjective. What is traumatic for one person isn’t necessarily traumatic for another person. By the way, you’ll find several definitions of trauma and the term ‘trauma-informed’ online. However, it is obvious that people are thinking about trauma and its impact on them differently these days.
NSW Health defines ‘trauma-informed care’ as being based on the understanding that:
• A significant number of people living with mental health conditions have experienced trauma in their lives
• Trauma may be a factor for people in distress
• The impact of trauma may be lifelong
• Trauma can impact the person, their emotions and relationships with others.
In fact some of our serious reoccurring weather conditions have triggered traumatic responses for some. The memory of what happened before and the thought of all of this happening again can be overwhelming.
So, why does this all matter in the workplace?
Because employees are not numbers; they are people. Chances are, you or someone you encounter in the workplace will deal with one or more of the above at some level in your lifetime. Humans experience trauma on a spectrum. Managing and leading people has changed forever. Not only because of the hybrid / flexible working models but because we’re seeing huge shifts in people’s perceptions. By the way, we also have 5 generations active in today’s workforce. Leaders like you, are more needed than ever before!
The one thing that never changes in business…
The heart of every business is its people.
That brings us to this scenario: people versus profit. Leaders need to have a commercial mindset. Money isn’t everything, but without a profit, a business can’t survive, much less thrive.
As a Leader, you need to be on top of the current themes and trends across the workforce. You need to truly invest in your people. However, you also need to retain a commercial mindset.
The reality is that it’s not about people or profit. It’s about people and profit. Your challenge as a Leader is to remove the obstacles, share the vision, and often, and engage the hearts and minds!
Share your thoughts with me on Leaders in 2023 and beyond.
Deborah Wilson is a Thought Leader and a Career Strategist. She takes a personalised approach to strategic career coaching and career transitions, mentoring and leadership development. Deborah provides expert guidance for individuals while supporting organisations through change and connecting people and purpose. Call Deborah on +61 403 779 746. www.ontalent.com.au