Reinvent your talent for the digital edge

The benefits are clear. Prioritize the reinvention of your talent to gain an edge in the digital world. PriceWaterhouseCooper’s current CEO survey found technology concerns among the highest on the list of worries for the 105 U.S. CEOs interviewed. Staffing concerns are of particular note. While 63% of them are planning technology hires, the vast majority are finding it more difficult to find qualified people, with 78% somewhat or extremely concerned about onboarding people with needed skills. Moreover, the challenges of the digital world are creating anxiety in the employee base, as people worry about not having needed skills, or losing any advantage they may have to artificial intelligence or automation.  An unsettled workforce is disruptive to organizational culture, and can lead to a loss of the very talent that others are seeking, and you must keep.

Employees, moreover, have good reason for anxiety. PwC found that 28% of CEOs surveyed planned headcount reductions because of technology, yet only about half of the U.S. CEOs (53%) felt they had a responsibility to retrain affected workers for new positions. In this disquieting ever-changing environment, your attention to developing, retraining, up-skilling, and essentially reinventing your talent base can deliver to the organization many of the needed skills, making employees feel valued, and supporting the healthy culture that is essential for peak performance. When the culture fails the employees, anxiety and turnover increases.  

According to data collected by IBM on the digital transformation now occurring, organizations that outperform their peers in the digital race paid the closest attention to their culture. Other studies also show that you can improve the digital outlook for your organization, while diminishing anxiety and turnover, through continuous learning. The organization is positioned to keep its talent, and the employee is positioned to continuously add value for the member, to each other and to the organization.

Despite data like IBM’s, which confirms the efficacy of a healthy culture as well as the positive return on an investment in learning programs, not all organizations are paying attention. Only 44% of financial industry CEOs were implementing such talent development and retention programs. This underwhelming focus on workforce development is in contrast to the growing technology concerns of the CEOs.  Cyber-threat worry has displaced the perennial concern of overregulation (55% extremely concerned in 2018), as the greatest CEO worry. Only 8% of CEOs were extremely concerned about cyber-security in 2013, rising to 50% in 2017 and to a whopping 63% in 2018. Extreme concern about the speed of technological change rose from 11% in 2013 to 44% in 2018, and extreme apprehension about availability of key skills rose from 11% to 32%.

Leaders must turn worry into action by addressing concerns that continuous advancing technology creates, by developing employees for digital proficiency. When employees are continuously retooled, refreshed and reinvented with learning, they can help you hone your digital strategies. Indeed, companies that are clear on how to effectively use AI and automation are most likely to succeed in this competition for talent, with the added critical benefit of improving the member experience. The results are better outcomes within the organization and the reward of better member satisfaction and organizational performance.

Stuart R. Levine

Stuart R. Levine

Founded in 1996, Stuart Levine & Associates LLC is an international strategic planning and leadership development company with focus on adding member value by strengthening corporate culture. SL&A ... Web: Details