Added by Craig Steel
What’s next for Kiwi businesses?

In case you’ve missed it, the only thing being spoken about these days is AI.

Call centre employees in front of computer screens

In case you’ve missed it, the only thing being spoken about these days is AI.

Although it promises to lift productivity, it won’t alter the fact that an organisation’s future will be determined by those who run it and what they enable their people to produce.

At the same time, wide-ranging redundancies have not only become the norm, the world has accepted their inevitability as Executives look for ways to improve margins on diminishing revenues.

Make no mistake, restructures will continue as the risk to organisational reputations is being offset by the number taking place. Further to this, investors expect their boards to take action rather than sitting on the sideline in the hope the market recovers.

For employees, it’s a worrying proposition as no one is employing meaning the market’s ability to absorb the relinquished is minimal.

What makes things worse is the disapproval shared by many of those (staff) who remain as to how their leaders are managing the process as it could undermine the benefits their structural reform offers given the impact they could have on the organisation's productivity and standing.


So what’s the answer?

Right-sizing a business to reflect market changes is not only important, it’s critical to an organisation’s survival. However, too many businesses are making the call out of fear rather than as a result of an informed strategy or leverageable shift in capability or technology.

As Boston Consulting Group reminded us, the single most important factor in an organisation’s success is its workforce and what they contribute.

Therefore, ensuring your people understand your challenges and what you need them to produce should be your absolute priority. Further to this, engaging them in the process of driving change rather than keeping them in the dark until you’ve figured it out is not only good for them, it’s good for your customers and business.

Although the market will continue to evolve, the game plan organisations adopt to serve it needs to be driven by those in command as opposed to waiting it out.

Looking at your competitors and what they’re doing isn’t leadership, and nor is shrinking your workforce without a plan to better serve your customers or increase their engagement.

The fact is, you need to give your people the confidence to deliver the outcomes you are looking for if you’re to retain your position in the market.

To do this, your leaders need to be clear about your expectations and what you’re up against. They also need to be equipped with the tools to lead rather than being blamed for losses as has become the norm in certain sectors.

It is also important leaders remember that out-performing a market is possible even if it’s hard. At the same time, it’s vital staff aren’t burdened with things they can’t address but instead, are empowered to do what they can with the levers they’ve got.

To do this, consider the following:

  1. Connecting your people to your vision or intent is more important than ever.
  1. Deploying frameworks to help your people reimagine the way they work will provide more value than AI because it’s relevant to every role as it stands rather than only those when and where it’s applied.
  1. Adopting modern people-first practices will have a greater impact on your people’s interest and experience than anything.
  1. Instilling customer-centred values will do more for your profitability than reducing costs alone.
  1. Improving the leadership throughout your business is more important than managing your people’s expectations.
  1. Building a performance-focused culture is doable even when things are tough.
  1. Adopting a new and better way of working is easier than you think when platforms like Vantaset are deployed.
  1. Understanding what matters, even if it’s outside your parameters, will make you more useful to those you’re there for.
  1. Asking your peers how they’re progressing could help them and those they’re responsible for.
  1. Knowing your numbers and how to improve them leads to better decision-making and ultimately, better leadership and momentum.

While we accept the market for many is as bad as it’s been for years, what we don’t want is to capitulate as a nation which is on the cards given the economic outlook.

Instead, executives need to make pragmatic decisions while being confident enough to look ahead as the opportunity for reform is there for those who have the courage to embrace it.


If you’d like some guidance on how to step things up or get ahead of your competitors, call us on +64 9 522 9409 or email us as our range of performance improvement products might be the answer.



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