Leadership: A key to the digital workplace

This week, three posts made a great contribution to my view on how leadership and management is needed in succeeding building the digital workplace.

The first was Jane McConnell’s Business is the Missed Opportunity of the Digital Workplace. Her annual survey continues to show how out-of-touch many managers are with what the employees need to succeed:

So the workforce in 55 percent of the companies used the intranet daily, if not hourly, in their work, yet senior management in only 13 percent considered it “business critical”?!

This, to me, sounds like managers are too engaged in other things than what their people find crucial, thereby aiming at the wrong things in their leadership.

The second post that made a great contribution this week, was Harold Jarche’s Good leaders connect. Switching from the more formal managers, to leadership, which does belong to more people than just managers. Let go of the busy work, and focus on the people instead:

The real job of leaders today is to “hold the space”, and in order to hold it they need to first establish a space where connections are flourishing.

So instead of the busy work, the leaders should help others connect, and thereby grow.

The third post was Tom Peter’s epic Herein a 737-page “Freebie”: EXCELLENCE. NO EXCUSES. 74 Ways to Launch Your Journey. Now. (And Then There’s Also “MOAP”).  The first of his “blinding flashes of the obvious” states:

BFO #1: If you (RELIGIOUSLY) help people—EVERY SINGLE PERSON, JUNIOR OR SENIOR, LIFER OR TEMP—grow and reach/exceed their perceived potential, then they in turn will bust their individual and collective butts to create great experiences for Clients.

In just three posts, I got so many ideas regarding the absolute crucial role managers and leaders play when turning an organization into a digital workplace. The more emphasis we place on dead-end meetings, busy work, and which technical tool can do what, the further away we come from what matters: The people.

Yes, in Tom’s words this is a blinding flash of the obvious. Nevertheless, or maybe because of it, it needs to be said over and over.

Author: Patrik Bergman

Privately: Father, husband, vegetarian, and reader of Dostoyevsky. Professionally: Works as Communications Manager at www.haldex.com

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