We all live in the 4.0 era, where we work in the same work environment, and have the same goals. But the truth is, we still treat our colleagues if they differ from us, maybe they come from another country, or they have different religions,… So, which rules in the workplace do we need to change to adapt to the digital age?
1. The digital age – what’s changing?
The corporate world has always evolved when new technology was introduced, but the broad adoption of the internet and its accompanying technologies may be one of the most significant transformations ever. Advances in information technology have made it simpler than ever to interact and connect, and the impact of the transition to adapt to the digital age may be likened to the impact of the industrial revolution.
Among the patterns noted during the previous three decades are:
Access to information - The digital revolution has given us more access to information than ever before, yet this may make finding useful information challenging. Too much knowledge and options may sometimes be harmful.
Speed - the internet has taught customers to be increasingly impatient, and employees are under more pressure than ever to complete their duties faster, even while it has aided teamwork.
Most firms have a multigenerational workforce, ranging from baby boomers to digital natives, as individuals retire later in life. While older employees have expertise that should be shared, they aren't as familiar with technology, therefore generations must be able to interact efficiently.
The use of the internet and mobile devices to do business is not going away anytime soon; in fact, it will become an even greater part of our lives as technology grows quicker and more efficient. This will open up a plethora of options for organizations to adapt to the digital age and leverage IT breakthroughs to establish an efficient digital workplace. Even technology, such as video conferencing, has opened up so many possibilities, allowing even the tiniest firm to do transactions in the global marketplace.
2. Rules need to be changed to adapt to the digital age
2.1. Every employee has the same power in the workplace
No, not the employees can decide their leaders, the power here is a right to speak, and to be treated equally, and their income is proportional to their work. When company rule makes sure all employees have the same power, it creates a healthy work environment, not only that, when everyone has a right to speak about their thoughts and ideas, it may help increase the overall productivity of the entire company.
Moreover, their well-being will be better too, this usually gets underestimated by the organization. But the truth is the healthcare costs your company paid for them are countable and you will save some money just by giving them a healthy work environment.
2.2. The employee can design their job
We are all familiar with how leaders assign job duties and decide how their employees should perform them. But they don’t know sometimes employees themselves are a better source of ideas about how they should spend their effort.
How to encourage everyone to create their way to do their work?
Encourage autonomy: You set the goals, but you don’t need to be so prescriptive about how your team reaches those goals. Let them choose the means to reach the ends your employee is given.
Communicate about the goals: As an employer, you still need to set a vision and communicate goals and priorities. If you invite your team to job craft, they will probably find more creative ways to reach those ends than you could have planned it up yourself.
2.3. Nobody is smarter than anybody
One of the deepest beliefs of command-and-control management is the assumption that the smartest company is the one with the smartest people. According to people with this kind of thinking, just as there is a right way to perform every activity, there are the right individuals who are essential for defining what are the right things and for making sure that things are done right for the entire organization.
Not only that, traditional organizations have long held that the key to the achievement of the corporation’s two basic accountabilities of strategy and execution is to hire the smartest individual managers and the brightest functional experts.
However, in a rapidly changing world, the smartest person on the team cannot compare with a group of teams. Because a single person cannot learn or have enough information when compared with a group of people.
2.4. Encourage employee passion in the workplace
Passion is a state of mind. So, when your employee is passionate about their role then they not only love doing it, but it seems interesting to them.
In the interview process, it is better to know if this candidate has a passion for this role in your company. If that is a job they are passionate about, that’s a big plus, because when you are doing your passionate job, there is no space left for disruption and distraction. Even your creative process is also enhanced and you tend to come up with better ideas and more innovative and progressive ideas as compared to doing a job that seems dull.
2.5. Making questions about the company's decision should be encouraged
Do your employees complain about the current decision of your company? If the answer is yes, encourage them to tell what they think. And avoiding their complaint is the worst thing you can do.
Why? Because when employees complain, the conflict has been born already between the leaders and the workers. So both two of them should talk with each other to solve the problem, maybe your employee sees the vision that is critical to the company but the leaders cannot see it.
2.6. Communicate the benefits
This technique addresses two sources of worker resistance:
Management's failure to communicate.
Failure to see the advantages of modern technology.
Transparency is essential when introducing technology that alters how people conduct their jobs, even if that technology will benefit them. The greatest method to encourage openness and smooth the shift from old to new is through open dialogue.
Consider conducting video meetings to highlight the benefits of the new technology and to invite questions and comments so that any concerns that may develop may be addressed.
After the meeting, establish locations where employees may continue to ask questions and receive updates. Create a group on the in-house instant messaging platform and send regular email updates to keep staff informed.
However, many firms fail to foster transparency via open dialogue. There is a significant gap between firms that outperform their competitors and those that do not.
Employees are more inclined to adopt new technology if the question "What's in it for me?" is answered. So, if you believe that cloud computing will make distant sales management easier, spread the word! Explain how the new technology will help them and do your utmost to allay their fears.
This is especially crucial for less tech-savvy staff since they will be the most uneasy.
3. Challenges when changing to adapt to the digital age
3.1. Lack of change management strategy
Organizations that have a comprehensive change management plan are six times more likely to accomplish or surpass their digital transformation goals. A good change management culture is critical for every organization's success—the absence of a change strategy guarantees the failure of any new project or implementation plan.
An effective change management approach includes project planning that includes identifying the fundamental causes of problems and creating connections with all stakeholders and workers.
3.2. Complex software and technology
Enterprise software is naturally difficult to understand, and new technologies may be scary. This is a significant barrier for businesses undertaking digital transformation, both in terms of implementation and data integration, as well as end-user experience. Leaders should think about this early on in a transformation effort and look for the most intuitive, integrated systems.
3.3. Driving adoption of new tools and processes
New procedures and technology frequently face opposition to change from established personnel who believe there is nothing wrong with the way things are currently done. Organizations must give extensive onboarding training and continual employee performance support for new software installations to assist workers become productive and adept with a tool fast, allowing them to appreciate the value of these new procedures.
3.4. Continuous evolution of customer needs
Organizations are continuously developing, and COVID-19 unquestionably hastened this process. Digital transformation is a difficult process, with extensive transformation efforts taking years to complete.
What if your customers' needs alter throughout that time? Customer problems will evolve. Don't be shocked; instead, be proactive and prepared to be adaptable when it comes to implementing new digital technology.
Digital transformation is a necessity for organizations to stay competitive, it changes the way we increase productivity, and our work environment, so, the company needs to adapt to the digital age’s changes, too.
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