Managing in the Age of Digitalisation

Hopped on the blogging bandwagon yet? This is my very first blog entry so I am trying to wrap my head around an appropriate format and tempo to adopt by reading what seasoned bloggers do. Learning from others never cease to bring a wealth of insights that’s for sure!

As Head of Human Resources, I am constantly faced with a myriad of people related challenges stemming from personality conflicts, indiscipline, lack of or worse still, zero integrity, below par performance and of late, depression, which had crept silently into the work place unnoticed.

We cannot deny that today’s workplace has metamorphosed into a disruptive environment where digitalisation has caused our lives to spiral out of sync just to keep up with the speed and demand for information. It is indeed a VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world that we live in today, where methods of the past are no longer relevant and force us to adapt quickly in order to survive or be left behind.

To add to VUCA, with mandatory retirement age extended to 60 years old, we have multiple generations working under one roof i.e. Baby-boomers, Gen-X, Gen-Y (or Millennials) and Gen-Z (or iGen) thus creating a diverse generational dynamics in the way we communicate, solve problems and define values.

So, how do we operate in a digital era and at the same time achieve an equilibrium on inter-generational dynamics? We certainly need to reskill, relearn, reinvent and realign our goals and priorities in order to succeed. We also need to be highly adaptable as the only constant is change.

In the grand scheme of things, embracing technology whilst largely designed to improve work productivity is not without consequences. Technology can isolate us from the much needed face-to-face interaction thereby inhibiting social values. The absence of direct human interaction such as acts of hiding behind social media platforms may give rise to other issues such as the need to mask ourselves superficially causing us to lose touch of reality.

So, let’s throw caution to the wind because we may be in danger of losing our humanity and clouding our sense of belonging. There is a need to strike a balance between physical interaction where the exchange of verbal conversations take place and the preferred online interaction where communication style is generally non-verbal. This is particularly true for the younger generation, where we are beginning to see a rise in mental health issues.

In order to transition into the digital era smoothly, we do need to adopt an open mindset and be willing to embrace changes in the way we operate but more importantly, we do not have to go through this journey alone as we have a network of support from our colleagues and peers.