Last updated on 5. February 2021In our article “Working in the Year 2030 – How Employees form the Future” we have already looked at how digitalisation, demographic change, as well as a profound change of attitude towards working and living will have an impact on the Workspace of the Future. In this article, we demonstrate in how far employers become hosts and how they should act to ensure their enterprise 2030 and beyond.
Demanding employees, the war for talent and disruptive technologies – there will be many new developments for employers until 2030. Not only do bosses have to confront these changed work conditions through a modern leadership style, but also the company structure will see fundamental changes. The “Fast Forward 2030“ study of real estate service provider CBRE and Genesis has presented in detail working trends in 2030. According to the study, in 2030 management staff will become more of a host than just an employer. How employers can prepare themselves for this, we explain here.
Enterprise 2030: Be Attractive for the Best
“In 2030 management staff have to be able to combine the dynamics of a start-up culture with the efficiency of traditional hierarchies”, the authors of the study state.
In the first instance highly qualified staff are in demand to meet these high expectations. However, they will be fiercely contended. In order to win these creative heads, companies have to present themselves in the best light. The experts and business leaders participating in the study even identified recruitment and retention of top talent as the biggest competitive advantage in 2030.
The strategy of many employers is therefore: Develop employer branding and models that appeal to the young generation. And that means in particular flexible structures: The Future Institute identified that 72% of 20 – 30-year olds want flexible and flat hierarchies. This means that companies have to balance individualisation on one side, i.e. meeting personal skills, wishes and preferences of staff, and on the other side forming a community. A “We“ has to emerge as it is well known that many individualists work significantly less productive than a well networked team. In addition, only the sense of community ensures that employees identify with the employer and enjoy going to work.
Often joint leisure activities or the use of in-house social networks are already enough to encourage the “We“-feeling. Those who want to dig deeper into their bag of tricks offer additional services, such as accommodation service, or a cleaning and shopping service. Phil Libin, CEO of the Californian software vendor Evernote for example comments on his laissez-faire leadership style as follows: “Find clever people, let them work in peace and don’t criticise them too much when they fail.“
In 2030 the employer becomes a host, the office develops itself more into a flat share with good friends, than a cold place of work. In future it will become even more important for organisations to develop identity-forming qualities, in 2030 even special corporate culture coordinators and feelgood officers will be recruited for this purpose.
Collaboration Newly Defined
In 2030 teams only form for a short time and consist of internal as well as external members, such as freelancers, agencies and partners. However, the quality of the team is crucial: Talents of the future would like to collaborate with intelligent, exciting people from whom they themselves can learn. Mere division of labour and sluggish email communication are a thing of the past. Work in 2030 is rather characterised by a network economy. People work together networked and flexible, work results are the product of a multi-layered process of collaboration, rather than a goal specified by the boss. Traditional organisational structures, which are characterised by rigid hierarchies and permanent structures, do not suit the modern network economy. 72% desire flat, flexible hierarchies, in particular with regard to working-time and -location.
These innovations obviously have some consequences for employers in 2030: it is important to recruit the best and to offer them attractive working times as well as flexible work locations. In addition, agile teams have to be given enough freedom to allow valuable work performance to develop. Old hat is rigid departmental thinking, as well as tight time and target specifications and extensive attendance times. All this will lead Enterprise 2030 only to limited success.
Enterprise 2030: Employees Want Continued Professional Development
Another key aspect of working in 2030 is professional development. The new generation of employees has a strong interest in continued qualification: according to the Future Institute, this is a high priority for 75% of 20 – 35-year olds.
However, traditional structures are not entirely suitable for the demand of working in 2030. As employees would like to be managed increasingly personalised, effective solutions are mentoring and coaching programmes, tailored in particular to individual staff. Today, some companies already use the so-called reverse mentoring. Here specialist experience and media competency is exchanged in cross-generational team building sessions between younger and older employees. At the same time, this form of mentoring also serves the retention of younger staff, in-house knowledge building as well as the creation of a ‘We-Culture‘.
As already mentioned, the traditional corporate career increasingly loses its attraction for young employees. In 2030 people prefer to work in flexible structures, not only with regard to working time and -location, but also concerning their employer. Therefore, companies have to offer alternative career models in 2030. Salary increases as well as status gains have to be possible without long years of employment, and promotion is to take place as unbureaucratically as possible. Therefore, a foundation has to be created to enable internal rotations, changes through internal development, attractive time-out models as well as intelligent return strategies.
In order to remain sustainable, employers have to implement some innovations by 2030. Particular key topics of Work 2030 are the war for talent, which demands absolutely flexible corporate structures and flat hierarchies. The collaboration within teams will also change, whereby Companies 2030 should exercise a laissez-faire attitude. Not least, professional development plays an ever-larger part. It requires, in particular, mentoring and coaching programmes as well as flexible promotion and exit models.
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