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At its core, the CEO role is a service job. We are all striving for the same goal: to satisfy our customers, to enable our employees to be most productive, to benefit our shareholders. That’s why the best leaders listen and adapt. But the current environment looks like a never-ending act of tension: pandemic shockwaves, geopolitical uncertainty, macroeconomic headwinds, social justice controversies and, oh my. yes, everyone’s favorite question: “Shall we go? back to the office or not?”
There are no easy answers, but curling up in a ball is not an option. If you manage people and control work resources, you are in the business of decision making. You get paid to make calls.
Command and control give way to decentralization
I don’t know of any CEO who describes himself as “remote-first” or “mixture,” even if that’s how their organization is trending. Increasingly, there is talk of executives about “getting people back to the office”. Truly forward-thinking leaders gave their employees control over where and when they worked, not because CEOs were more supportive of employees in mid-day workouts or haircuts. , but because we see productivity gains in this post-COVID tech-enabled way Work.
Growth-minded CEOs also know that just letting employees work from home isn’t enough; Employees must be empowered to make effective decisions, which means they need tools and services to be more productive. This challenge represents the real next step in the future of work: Make every employee the CEO of their domain.
While the idea of work remotely Not a novelty, the pandemic has accelerated the inevitable. Widespread adoption today requires more decentralized decision-making than we’ve seen before. And it is working. Recently momentarily Research shows that 90% of people in decentralized organizations have seen a positive impact on their team’s overall success. (We rarely see 90% of people agree on anything!)
Command and control organizations are obsolete. We all know the majority of decisions that drive businesses today happen outside of the C-suite. The best companies are those whose employees in the field are implementing the company’s strategy. The companies are too big and the market too competitive to wait for decisions from above; a competitor will beat you with speed. So individual contributors in each department are making important business decisions on a daily basis. From a marketer fine-tuning an ad campaign based on performance to a customer support specialist who looks at customer feedback data and finds common pain points to work through to a trained engineer report user-reported errors — these are not C-suite issues, but they are what keep an organization running. And it’s all based on human emotions.
Empower employees in making business decisions
The key is to empower these day-to-day decision-makers with the autonomy to work where they work best, with the human sentiment data they need to make data-driven decisions, no matter what. whether their colleagues are far or near. Of course, collecting performance data is vital to any operation, but focusing on performance metrics doesn’t take into account the thoughts and feelings of employees, customers, and customers. Future products will put businesses at a standstill in today’s complex business vortex.
Consider how rapidly the macro environment is changing: In January 2022, The Great Resignation is in full swing. Just a few short months later, employees were fired, stopped hiring and job offers canceled. Oh, and do you remember the phrase “temporary inflation” from 2021? The Fed got a cold sore from reality as inflation soars in 2022. New data is needed to make better decisions faster.
As we continue to reimagine how to work together, company leaders need to go all out and rethink how they connect with all stakeholders. Companies are as susceptible to the butterfly effect as the weather. Every decision made — no matter how big or small — can have a lasting impact on a company’s entire ecosystem. And despite the unprecedented challenges we face, Not Making decisions isn’t an option — so why not make the process more human?
Zander Lurie is the CEO of Momentive.ai.
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