As technology rapidly evolves, the field of human resources is changing along with it. What will the future of HR look like? In this interview, we explore how technology will shape the future of HR and discuss some of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
Today we discuss How Can Technology Shape The Future of HR with Fraser Duncumb from Wotter; who specialise in employee engagement.
As technology rapidly evolves, the field of human resources is changing along with it. What will the future of HR look like? In this video, we explore how technology will shape the future of HR and discuss some of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. Today we discuss this important subject with Fraser Duncumb from Wotter who specialise in employee engagement.
In this interview, we discuss HR and the future of work and how technology will shape the way we work in the years to come. Fraser Duncumb is the CEO and Founder of Wotter, a software company that helps organisations increase employee engagement.
What will the future of HR look like?
The role of HR is changing, and technology is playing a big part in that change. We explore how HR is changing and the difference between companies that have really got it right VS the ones that clearly haven’t.
What are some of the challenges that lie ahead for HR?
The challenges for HR are to keep up with the pace of change and to make sure that they’re using technology in the right way. We also discuss how important it is for HR to have a good understanding of data and analytics.
What are the opportunities that lie ahead?
The full transcript is below:
Welcome to influential visions. Here we interview futuristic leaders who share their deep industry knowledge and business experience with you, ensuring you have your finger on the pulse and your eyes wide open. My name is Nathaniel scooter, and I am your host. Thanks for tuning in.
Well, it is another amazing lineup of people I’m faced with today. And I’m in one of these funny mood, but we’re, I dunno what to say, Kim. Sometimes I just
Lost I’m very often at loss for words with you. My lovely.
Yes, I know. So today I’m, I’m very privileged to be joined with joined by Kim-Adele Randall and Nish Ranasinghe again, and we are, we are interviewing Fraser Duncumb who has a lot of great knowledge around the HR space and also around technology itself. He’s the co-founder and CEO of Wotter. So thanks guys for joining me. I’m really excited to kind of dig deep into the HR subject of human resources today. So yeah, it should be, it should be a lot of fun, hopefully. So Fraser, do you think there are massive problems then within, within HR?
Gosh, start with a start with a like trick question there. Like, no, everything’s fine. No. Is, are there massive problems within HR? I think the thing that is is happening in, in the world, we we’ve had a number of massive changes in the last fifty in the last 50 years, we’ve had the rise of the computer. We’ve had the rise of the mobile phone. We’ve had the rise of the internet, all of these have allowed work to change immeasurably O over that time. And then in the, in the sort of last few years, thanks to, to, to COVID, which of course in many ways has been been horrendous. We we’ve had a, an almost forced trial of working from home and, and this is not new. That’s the, you know, I can’t take credit for that statement, but what, what it does does mean is is that the, the world of work has changed and continues to change incredibly quickly, faster than it’s ever changed before. And I think probably then the bigger question is, are we keeping up, are we using the tools at our disposal to keep up with the changes in expectations, the changes in input and the changes in output that, that work entails? And I think really the answer there, there is, there’s a lot more we can do.
Yeah. Yeah. So I know you, you’ve got loads to say around this, Kim, you know, a lot about it. So
I guess me, one of the, the things that, that I’ve seen over the last 30 ideas of, of working is that we often, we often don’t think about the people element of what it is that we’re trying to do. And we assume that that people element is gonna be picked up somewhere else. And that’s often where perhaps HR gets a bit of a bad rap because they’re expected to pick up all the people. But the reality is it’s the leaders that they’re there to pick up the people. And I think that’s been one of the things we’ve seen in the last couple of years, you you’re so right phrase that we’ve had a enforced trial of, of remote working, but actually that really exposed some of the challenges that we’ve got because those leaders that weren’t very good at being able to connect and engage and enthu when they were in the office, didn’t get any better at it when they were suddenly forced to be virtual. And actually you lose some of that more, you know, more human context. And I think one of the things for me that I think is fascinating is yeah, how we help our people adjust to the fast pace of change is in the soft skills, which always makes me smile, cuz if they were really so soft, why do people find them so hard? Cause people struggle with the most isn’t it is those seemingly soft skills of how we connect.
Absolutely. I think, you know, one, one of the big things is, is having, you know, round PS and round holes and square pegs and square holes and you know, it, it’s fine. You know, I, I would be a terrible doctor. Like I’m, I’m absolutely certain, I would be a terrible doctor. My neighbor’s a doctor and she is clearly a very good doctor and, and I am aware that that’s not me and that’s okay because I’m not a doctor I’m not going to try and be a doctor. And I think this is, is the sort of case, you know, there’s a sort of pervasive feeling within, within work. That’s, that’s gone back 200 years that, you know, progression is the, is the ultimate thing. Everyone needs progression. You know, you are told in, you know, people are told by colleges to go to interviews and ask what progression opportunities there are because it makes it seem like you want to stay there.
And, you know, it’s like, is, is progression at all costs really what we need, like is it not just okay to be really good at something and then be rewarded for being really good at that thing? And you know, you look at what I think one of the biggest moves that H the HR space has made that, that goes towards fixing that, that problem that, that you mentioned there, Kim is the Google, you know, Amazon various sort of Silicon valley companies initially. And, and more beyond, beyond that have totally decoupled pay and position. And they say, why, you know, why, why should the manager be paid more than the people they manage? Like, there’s, there’s no real kind of like reason for this cuz what, what tends to happen is, you know, think back to the 2003 world cup and think back to, you know, David, Beckhams having an absolute Stomper of a world cup.
There we are. We just got through to the final and the FA turns around to, to the, the team and, and says, right, spend, you know, we, we’re promoting you to director of the FA cuz you’ve done so well. And, and David, you are gonna be our manager from now on. And it’s like, but, but we’re like what? You’ve just, you’ve just taken your best player out of the team and put them on top of the team in a job that they don’t know how to do so well because of some perceived sort of posterity that, that comes from that. And as a result, you’ve, you’ve made everything worse. Like there’s no, there’s no kind of other way to say the best place for David Beckham in the final of the 2003 world cup was on the pitch. Unfortunately we are England and therefore we didn’t win.
But I, I think if you, if you can sort of remove this, this pay and, and progression kind of coupling, then you can start really focusing on what people are really good at. Like some people are just really good at dealing with customers. So why are you suddenly making them deal, with your staff? You know, some people are, are really good at, I don’t know, doing really complex things with code. So why are you suddenly making them team managers? You know, it, it’s the same sort of idea. I think if we, if we just focus on this round pegs and round hole, square pegs and square holes, then, then that, that ultimately solves a lot of, a lot of problems along the way.
I love that. And it it’s true there. We started so young don’t we, we start at school trying to make everybody an all rounder. So you’ve gotta be good at everything rather than letting people find what is the thing that they’re brilliant at and then turned the volume upon it. And I remember working at egg back in the late 1990s, and we actually introduced a piece where you could earn as much being one of the phone associates as you could being a team leader, cuz we wanted to stop our best people in front of customers moving over and being mediocre team leaders, cuz that wasn’t where their skillset was. And you ended up and I see this in organizations, the world over where instead of having leaders, we have superior friends, you know, I’m in it with you. I just earn a little bit more because I don’t really know how to lead you. I don’t know to how to have those difficult conversations, but I’ve been given the title. So go in that, that stuck space that we need to help them move out of. And I think making those changes like Google are doing is gonna go some way to being able to really revolutionize how we achieve that. Isn’t it. And help people find their gift and then really use that gift. Well, niche. I know you say something.
Yeah. I was just thinking, I totally agree with, with, with what you’re saying, both of you’re saying, and I think that what we like, that’s the thing you promote your best people in a job to being the managers and you never take into consideration whether they’ve ever helped another team member do anything, whether you’ve they’ve ever actually allocated or prioritized anybody’s work. Those kinds of like you mentioned soft skills, they’re so difficult to observe within the context of a team, but the best managers do observe that about their team members. And they do know who can, who might actually end up being probably worse potentially at doing the actual day job, but better at encouraging other people and training other people and bringing people together and doing all of those things that, that actually consolidates that team and makes it a high performing unit. And you know, we I’ve had an incredible, like incredible experience for me.
It was a great experience when I was over in Singapore and I was leading the tech consulting firm over there and we were a young team in the sense of everybody. And I, I hate to, I hate to admit it, but yeah, I, I, I realized over there that I am a millennial, I hadn’t realized what dates that would, that what date catch me that would put me in. But all of us at, in fact from the top, the person who ran the company all the way down, we were all millennial millennials. And we were, so we were a young team and there were people in positions of power or authority figures there who were making real decisions, who didn’t have a flipping clue as to how to manage people and get people to do what they would got, get people to do what they should be doing and motivate people.
And the biggest change that was made was that a HR person was brought in. And like you say, it’s just outsourcing that particular problem that poor HR lady turned up and she was like, hang on a minute. You know, of course, such a UFF here that I’m now going to have to, I’m now going to have to kind of clean up, but it comes from that a cultural aspect of if the, the top of the house isn’t able to motivate and inspire and bring about the correct culture of the team, an, an HR person is just going to have to do damage control at that point. It’s not, it’s not their job to do this. It’s absolutely the leadership. So yeah, totally agree with what you’re saying.
Absolutely. And I think it’s, it is so easy to underestimate the effect of this as well. And so I, I always, there’s a little exercise. I, I, I get people to do so we’ll, we’ll, we’ll do it now. And if you think back to a job that you hated on a day, that you really didn’t feel like you did a good job at all, or you just couldn’t be bothered, whatever, think of how much work you did on that day. You know, just, just try and try and picture that as a sort of entity of how much work you did and now think of a job that you loved on a day that you went home and you went, oh God, yeah, I was good today. And think of how much you achieved, how much work you did on that day. And the gap between the two is employee engagement.
Like that’s, that’s what it is. And so, you know, no one should be naive enough to think that we can like all be on top of our game all the time. Like we’re human. We, we have issues. We have things that happen in our life outside of work. We have things that happen inside of work that shouldn’t, you know what, whatever, like we are not gonna get to that second sort of idea all the time, but if we can get close, like what can we achieve? Like, that’s that that’s in incredible to me. And yet, you know, we, as you say, we, we sort of outsourced the problem as they, oh, well, it’s a bit of a culture thing. We’ll just go, we’re going, go and fix that. And it’s like, well actually like Christ, like the, the, the team that you you’ve got. Okay.
Imagine, imagine two companies that are in a relatively traditional business service sector choose your own. And these, these two companies are a very similar size. They’ve been around a relatively similar amount of time. Like they’re, they’re on paper. They’re, they’re, they’re pretty much the same. And one of them has just posted their record year, their record earnings. And the other one has just posted a profit warning and said, well, actually, you know, we are not gonna achieve what we, we wanted to achieve. What, what’s the difference between these two companies? Like they’re doing the same thing with the same tools, you know, with the same technology, the same world around them. Like there’s the only difference is the people and that that’s, that’s how powerful, like this is happening everywhere, all around us. We’re seeing, you know, companies, two companies that on paper should look the same, where one vastly outperforms, the other Ko.
And heke in the, in the nineties, did a study with Harvard business review, where they showed that companies that have a people first mentality outperform over the course of the 11 year study. They did, they outperformed those that didn’t have a people first mentality by a fact were fourth. This, these companies were four times bigger after 11 years than those who didn’t, didn’t put them, you know, like so easy to think, oh yeah, well, you know, Barry over, there’s not smiling again. You know, it’s like, why? Like why is Barry not, not smiling is, you know, Barry doesn’t need to smile all the time, but Barry should at least be proud to come into work and feel that he’s going to a place that is, that cares for him and looks after him and builds up the best in him so that he can give everything that he’s got back again. Like it’s a, two-way, it’s a two-way street.
It’s, it’s so true phrase. And I think it’s the, sometimes I used to get it leveled at me all the time. It’s right for you. Can you do the fluffy people stuff? Brilliant. But let me just tell you what that’s done to your bottom line, cuz actually the bit that they don’t always see is not only do you, does your performance suffer, but you also start to lose profit margin because your absence goes up, your attrition goes up, you are losing so much of, of the, of the collateral of, of the organization. And actually if you get it right for your people, if you make sure that they’re engaged. And I always thought as a leader, my only job was to make sure I delivered a good service to my people. Because if I didn’t, how could I expect them to deliver a good service to, to their people, which were the, which were the customers.
But I think it’s it’s how do we get people to really understand that? And those, you know, there’s been research that shows that 57% of people leave their boss, not the organization. So more than one in two, leave you, if you are, if you are a leader, if you’re managing somebody more than one in two people that leave are leaving you, not HR, not the company, not the organization, but you and actually the research went on to show that 64% would take a pay, cut a different boss. So the impact that we have as leaders is, is huge. And you, to your point, the positive that that can have on the overall company on its performance is, is immeasurable. But we often get stuck. You know, I went into one organization recently, they had a 57 page, monthly business review and they asked me to like review it, which I did like came, said what she thoughts?
And I said is fascinating, 57 pages. Not one of them talks about your people and yet, without your people, you can’t deliver any of this. This is just, it’s just pie in the scar because you they’re the ones that are going to deliver it. And yet you don’t even talk about them. It’s not the thing that, that comes up. And yes, you could go and get, tell me to go and get the HR lady to come in. But we are all here. We are all leaders. We should be able to tell you what’s going on with our people. What’s important to them, what the challenges are, what they, you know, what they need to be able to thrive, not just survive. And I think once we make those changes in, in the dialogues that we have at board level, it’s going to really shift the culture because one of the number, one things that’s on board.
So agendas the globe over and it was there before the pandemic and it’s there underlined post. The pandemic is how do you attract and retain top talent. But instead of looking to the leadership team and saying, what are we doing? How are we engaging with our people? They outsource that to, to HR and this, to your point, they can’t do that. Cuz they could build the most amazing culture. But if the leadership team aren’t walking the talk and nobody believes it, cuz they’ll go, well, you say trust is important to you, but look what that person’s doing over there. And they’re in the senior team. So I don’t believe that trust is important to you. So it’s, I think our culture has to be some, something that we, where we walk our talk, you know, where, where our lips and hips actually match. And I think that’s the number one change almost that we, that we need to get people to, to recognize.
There’s there’s a great saying, which is, you know, reminds me of John Lenn quote as well. But it’s like culture is what happens when you’re not looking. We, we always sort of think, oh yeah, well, oh, I mean, everyone tells me everything’s fine. So the culture here must be good. But like what, what, what happens when you leave? Like when you go on holiday, what happens like, and as a leader, like if you go on holiday and you can trust that everyone like actually cares about their job and is going to continue performing in their job, like you can go and have a better holiday. Like this is, you know, this isn’t all just like give, give game. Like you actually do get something back from this. Like you, you get a, a warm, fuzzy feeling that actually like these people care about this thing just as much as you do.
Yeah. I also think that culture is, is such a, is such a buzzword at the moment. I dunno when I dunno when I don’t think it happened just at the, around the pandemic, it was just before that the culture started coming to the four I think. And
When everyone started talking about ping pong tables.
Yeah, exactly, exactly. And you know, yeah, we’ve got a great culture, but exactly the same like that the company I was, you know, I’ve got so many case studies from this particular company, but they would profess the company, the company culture was the best thing. What they meant was is that we are young. We will bring, you know, the drinks to the table. We’ll take our customers out. We’ll have, we’ll bring the fun to the group, but actually culture, culture, underlines like underlies values is underpinned really by values. Right? So if, for example, like we’ve had something in the company I work for now, whereby you know, one of our, our kind of values is transparency, like customer transparency. So when we are discussing a certain, you know, particular event that’s happening, that is customer related. We know that actually there’s nothing that we can really hide from them because we want to be upfront.
We want to, we want to perpetuate this transparency. And it it’s about, like you say, trust like, okay, trust is one of the values. But if you’ve got a particularly controlling leader who sits there, like, like you’re mentioning on their holidays, kind of, you know, constantly sort of like, is everyone doing this? Is everyone doing that? That is not trust that that doesn’t empower people. It doesn’t inspire people. It doesn’t mean mean that people feel as if they are being trusted to do their job correctly. And it’s so, and it’s so much simpler than, you know, spending, you know, whatever, hundreds of hundreds of pounds on a ping pong table and making sure everyone at four o’clock goes and gets beer or whatever it is. It’s so much more than that. It starts off probably with that. And everyone kind of gets, it gets a buzz from all of those fun things.
But my goodness, like it’s all about those really core people. People motivations that that need to be just persisted throughout the whole, the company. And that comes down to remember. We, we started thinking about hiring people and doing people, are they called psych, not psychometric versus personality testing, you know, those disk studies and all that, and trying to understand the different relationships and the different people types of people we need in the team forget skill. And I’ve always been of the opinion that you don’t actually need to know a domain. You can be taught a domain when you get into the company, but for so
Except except for doctors,
Except, well, you say that, you know, my fiances, a doctor say, he hate me for saying that there is also Google, but anyway, but no with, with yeah. Psychometric tests or not. So psychometric tests, but personality testing to say, right in our team, this team is lacking a extroverted leader. So forget anyone quiet who comes to the table, forget this. Let’s just, you know, put those off the like, tick those off slightly and then move on because we know what this team needs. And it’s just an interesting concept. We haven’t implemented anything like that yet. And I don’t think any company that I’ve worked for has, but it would be an interesting sort of, it would be interesting to understand if anyone has, anyone has done something like that,
Sorry, go go, Kim
Briggs practitioner. And one of the things we do is, is help people in teams. And it’s about identifying that. You can do that. You can go down the 16 bits and go, you need some of these, you need some of those, but actually if you do the team working properly, you can actually see that unless you have both, you miss out on something, you know, that we did, we did an exercise with introverts versus extroverts, just cuz you know, you, you mentioned about, and it was about a Christmas tree and we gave it to the extroverts and, and oh my goodness, you know, we’ve got Carol singing, we’ve got the fire crackling. You’ve got the smell of, you know of me mince pies with there. They’ve got picture of a Christmas tree. Whereas when you went to, to ask the introverts to describe it, they could describe the ornaments on it.
They could explain what looked like. So actually neither one was right. But when you put the two together, you got such an amazing view and you felt like you were there, but if you were in either one on its own, there were gaps. And the reason we did that was to help people realize that we all bring something unique to, to that piece. But what we have to do is be in the PLA we need to be present. We need to be there and we need to be able to bring our view to whatever it is that we’re doing. And when we create that, when we’re able to bring our view. And I guess it’s a little bit like when we were kids, you know, we ultimately, it’s the presence we want as in, we want you to be there, not the presence as in we want to buy you things.
And I think that’s the piece that we’re a little bit behind the times with when we think about culture and it’s, you know, it keeps coming round. It’s cyclical. Like most other things like the eighties, we all hoped that the clothes would stay there and heaven them forbid go out again. But they did. I think the same is true in kind of what happens in businesses and culture. You know, it keeps turning up, but actually one of the bits is they just want your time. You know, I remember working for one organization, we had no money. We couldn’t give them bonuses or get a table tennis table. We couldn’t really afford to survive the week. But when you went round, you know, I used to go around with the tea trolling around all 1200 people and go and make them tea. I was the COO.
So it might okay, well that was a waste of your time, but it wasn’t. It was the most valuable time I spent every month. Cause the amount I learn in the organization from being with them at their desk, asking what it was like to be them what’s going on this month meant they connected with you all months. And I ended up getting the CFO was a very doer Yorkshireman lovely, lovely guy come with me. Eventually took a while. So like, come on, come with me. And it came at the end of it. It was like, do you know, I’ve learnt more about the organization in the last hour than I’ve learned in the last 13 years said you will. And you’ll continue to learn because now that they’ve connected with you, they’ll come and tell you when things are stupid or things are like, why do we do this? Cuz it’s ridiculous because you’ve actually spent time and connected with them. And I think that’s kind of what people are desperate for. Isn’t it is to feel that connection.
Yeah. I mean, I I’m aware that we’re on a technology podcast here ultimately. And so I’m going to segue into, into what, you know, what, what we are trying to achieve here, cuz this all, all speaks very closely to our sort of mission as a, as a company water. I mean our, our, our mission is to build a world where everyone’s engaged in their work, whatever that looks like to different people. That’s, that’s not, I can’t prescribe what that looks like to you or to someone else. Like that’s, that’s a very individual thing, but if we can build a world where everyone feels proud of their, of their, their input, their, the world that they, they live in and the, the world that they help create, like that’s the sort of incredible thing that we should be, be looking for. And one of the things that I’ve, I’ve seen over my, my time in, in, in work and you know, also sort of working with my clients is that there isn’t a one size fits all culture.
There are different cultures, there are different places that have different merits, different strengths, different weaknesses that attract different people who all achieve very highly. But the thing that I, I am certain of is that wild cultures can be very different. The, the key factor is that, is that people genuinely care and don’t just say they care, but they, they actually care about, about what is going on with their culture and, and their company. And so we were talking a little bit, a moment ago about personality testing and that, that sort of thing, I think that’s, that’s a fascinating sort of area and, and an area that that water has, has dabbled in and, and is continuing to, to look into as far as sort of gathering the data. Now, what, what, what we are trying to do is, is say, Hey, if, if we can look at your team, we can assess through our 24 pillars of engagement that we build.
If we can assess where the strengths are, where the weaknesses are, trust is a big one. Management is a, is a big one sort of loyalty and vision for the company. You know, they’re all huge parts of, of that sort of puzzle, a along with your, your professional and personal wellbeing vitally important. But if we can create, you know, we can accept that, you know, this sales team does not look like this tech team does not look like that marketing team and doesn’t look like this customer service team and that’s okay. Like, that’s fine. We don’t need to try and try and tick these, these boxes. And I think one of the, the, the questions, niche, I think, you know, that, that I would have is I, I think it’s great to, to try and pick up, you know, what the different strengths and weaknesses are in the team, but like how we don’t know what perfect looks like.
Like we, we don’t know the actually a charismatic leader in this area is what we need because charisma takes all sorts of forms that some of the, some of the greatest leaders in the world were introverts. Like there, there, isn’t a kind of like a set mold for what, what that looks like. And, and so I think that’s a really interesting sort of thing to, you know, you can use data and you can use AI to, to really try and dig in and find the, sort of the complexities that we as humans just, just don’t don’t spot.
Mm. And yeah, that’s absolutely, you’re absolutely right. And I think where I’ve seen it work and you know, another company I worked at again, we were all done. We were given a report. So you’d answer all the questions. Like it was quite an extensive set questions. And then you get this graph as to where you are on the scale in terms of it’s called DSC. So the disk. Yes.
It’s a good one.
Yeah. So what, where, where, you know, when, when it first, I’m all, I love all this personality testing, so I was into it, but I know a lot of people in our management team specifically were quite cynical of it now where it came to, where it was interesting was I’d had a disagreement with some, with a counterpart of mine. We’d had a disagreement over a customer about how it was handled, all these sorts of things. And we we’d came come to a bit of an impass in terms of how, how to, how to come to an agreement on what to do next and what, what, this is what the HR team did. Actually, they compared our profiles, they did a comparison report and basically gave handed to each of us. And it was kind of like, okay, this is how you work with this person.
And then that person got my one as well. And in this report was these, these are things that’s important to him. These are things that are important to you. You guys are on these two ends of the scale. And honestly, like we got together after that and we kind of, we got, we went to the pub or something like that afterwards. And we were like, right, well, this bloody interesting. Right? And, and we, and it was able to in, in some binary formats, help us to understand our differences. Another thing that Myers Briggs did, I, I think I, I did a very, very small Myers Briggs study in a group that I was working with way back when, and that again, showed that the whole team was totally different. And it is, it is about understanding your differences and learning to work with each other, what your motivations are.
And I think those types of technology in and personality, whatever it is trying to map engagement, trying to understand how, how people might interact or how, what motivates people and trying to sort of map that out and then presenting it back to them and saying, look, there’s nothing that you actually fundamentally don’t have anything that you are butting heads about. You’re both coming from a place that you wanna do the right thing, but your backgrounds mean that you value this, versus he values this, therefore you all butt heads on this. And it was a really great actually tool to get us to actually resolve that issue. And I thought that was a brilliant, brilliant use of technology in HR. So yeah, like that, I mean, anything that sort of is able to map out, you know, people did as employment surveys, I dunno how great they are, but engagement surveys, where it’s like, did you like, did you like us giving you a free lunch last week? Yay. Last Friday, every month everyone gets a free lunch and that’s what ends up happening with those. Right. So anyway, it’s just an interesting, interesting, I
Think, I think you’re right. But I think with engagement surveys, it’s what you do with them afterwards. Isn’t it? And I think like with my breaks with disc, with all of them, all they do is, is tell us how we’re likely to respond from the pressure. Cause it doesn’t mean you can’t change. You know, if you, if you do are an extrovert doesn’t mean say you can’t have moments of being introverted or, or vice versa. It’s about saying under pressure and you, the way that I always used to describe it was your, your, your preference and their preference, not strengths or weaknesses, there’s no right or wrong. Your preference is the driver in the car. So imagine you’re in the car, you’ve got the driver, you’ve got the passenger, you’ve got the teenager and you’ve got the baby. And it’s just about how well developed they are.
So your driver, your preference is the one that is the most competent. But when you start to get a little bit stuck, you move to the passenger to help navigate they’re the map reader can’t work out which way to go, tell me where it’s. And then occasionally the teenager all wants to put the music on and hopefully the baby stays asleep, cuz we all know when the baby wakes up and everybody is looking because they’re, you know, cuz they’re very upset. They’re gonna shout the screen. And that’s basically what our preferences do. So our least developed our baby preference is the one that comes out under pressure. So all these things do is help us understand how we are in certain situations. And then with technology, we can help share that with other people to say, great point. I’ve done it myself with somebody where we got on famously, outside of work. But in work we used to have a real IPAs because he wanted me to fill in 500 sheets and that’s not my style. I’m like just it on and do it. I’m
Don’t tell anyone about that. I’ve told you don’t tell anyone about that. Kim,
Once we had a conversation where it was like, right, okay. How do we find a way through this? Because the thought of sitting and filling in that spreadsheet fills me with utter dread, but I know you need it to be able to feel that you are in control of what’s going on. So we found the compromise and it was, it was that technology. It was that infrastructure that allowed us to work through the conversation. And I think for me, they’re the bits that are really interesting about what’s gonna happen next in the tech space, within not within the HR HR space, but within the people space. Cuz I think we, we need to take away the label in every organization. It’s people, you know, we hear people say, it’s really, you know, it’s really complicated. I’ve got all these, I’ve got customers, that’ve got suppliers, colleagues, they’re all people, every one of thems person at the end of the day, all the people using the technology are people when you get to the end of the line.
And I think now that there are so many things that we already have, like the personality pieces, like reading my expressions and emotions, understanding data science, it could hopefully help us break down some of the, some of the chances where conflict comes up. And I, you know, I think for me, what would be really interesting is to have a conflict revolution instead of resolution where we look at conflict as an opportunity to learn and grow about each other, because that’s all it is. You’re normally coming from a good place. You’ve just got a misunderstanding and it’s how do we help use the, the technology and the infrastructure to remove those misunderstandings and get people aligned and engaged? Cuz I think we wanna be listened to understood and respected. And I think that’s why it’s, there’s so such differences. As you’ve said, Fraser, a leader looks like, but for me, the commonality of good leaders is those people irrelevant of how they are, whether they’re extrovert, introvert, whatever that is, is that they provide a space where they listen, understand and respect the people that work for them. And that’s, I think what, what really drives that engagement.
That’s very interesting. You’ve got, thanks guys for this, this masterclass I’ve just been sitting here like just mulling over what you, what you’ve been saying, you know, and I mean, I’ve been, I’ve been kind of studying tech for the past few years and had a very interesting conversation around how you could actually use the data and, and use the data in terms of which jobs are actually dying out, which jobs are actually gonna be coming on board in the next five years, two years, three years, 10 years. And then, you know, and put together, you know, if you can combine that data from customer engagement, you can, you can combine that data with, oh, well I’m not really interested in, in what’s going on here. And I’m not sure about this job, you know, is a salesperson actually gonna be in sales in the next five years, just as a potential example.
Right? So these kind of jobs I believe are, are, are actually dying out. In many cases, obviously they’re gonna be exceptions, but they’re in so many industries, it’s all changing. And then if you put together the personality insights you put together, the ambition, cuz I think ambition, motivation drive. If you can, if you can think about those and say, well, okay, this person over here, they’re not driven by what you think they’re driven by, right? And actually they’re perfectly happy doing that particular thing that they’re doing and they really enjoy it, but that’s not gonna be around anymore. So how are you gonna find the next thing that they’re gonna love to do? And then if you can align all these things with people in, in the third world, in developing economies and you can, you can perhaps guide them on, on and coach them into, you know, potentially new jobs that don’t even exist yet. And you can say to ’em well, we think based on our data that this particular job is gonna be around in the next two, three years, this sector is growing massively. It’s like cybersecurity, for example. So I’m hugely excited about it. I, you, you put all these pieces together and we are, we are really gonna be changing the world actually.
Absolutely. I think the, the biggest move in technology in the last few years, the, the, the biggest thing that’s, that’s going to revolutionize the world more and more is access to data. We we’ve talked about a, a lot of amazing things that, that, you know, should, should be done in the workplace. We, we totally, you know, agree and, and being able to understand each other is, is so important. Being able to communicate with each other is so important. What we have now that we’ve never had before is an ability to, to use data, to, to really get down onto, onto a whole new level about whether that works. I’m convinced that no one ever turned around and said, the annual survey is the best we, we could possibly have. Like no one has ever optimized the annual employee survey and all. And, and I’m, I’m convinced that the conversation that spawned, it was sort of like, we should probably go and ask these people what their experience is, cuz they’re a big part of our company.
But in order to do that, we have to go and design a survey or pay lots of money. And we don’t wanna do that too often. Cuz that sounds like hard work. And we don’t really know what we are looking at when the data comes back in. So we’ll do a sort of analysis, but like we’re not statisticians where, you know, we people, people and, and then we’ll, we’ll go and make a load of decisions and we’ll pass it part the, the board because you know, everything majors come up cause we’ve only asked it once a year. So we’ll go and talk about it at board level. And then, and then five months pass and, and people start to go, oh yeah, well maybe we should put some fruit in the office. And, and if you, you know, this is just a totally underwhelming experience to be on the receiving end of.
And so, you know, sort of shameless plug almost here, but with, with a platform like, like water, what you can do is, is keep a, a constant pulse on, on what’s happening. And, and we take away all of those bits that are painful and difficult about the annual survey. You don’t have to write it yourself cuz we went and got psychologists to do it. You don’t have to do the, the analysis yourself. Cause we went and got statisticians to do it. Like all that happens is we create this, this sort of safe space where people can air the, the truth about their, their day to day lives, their day to day work. I mean, don’t forget, we spend more time at work than we spend with our partners. Like when was it acceptable to turn around and say, yeah, but work’s work like no one enjoys work.
Like it’s just a thing that you have to do. I mean, it’s a thing that you have to do for 40 hours a week. Most people, if not more. And so, you know, if, if we can constantly create a feedback loop and use the data and use analytics and use AI to really understand whether the things that we’re talking about that we are all agreeing are so important, whether they’re working, whether they’re having an effect, whether we’re solving problems for people and whether ultimately they are coming into work more like as I’ve mentioned, that thought experiment earlier, more like that, that second camp where they come in and they think, oh my God, I was good today. Like I was, I was great. Like that’s what we should all be aiming for. And I don’t understand where somewhere along the work, the lines, this, this got muddied into, into like, oh yeah, but works work. And
That’s true Fraser, but I’m afraid I’m gonna have to, I’m gonna have to cut you short because we gotta rush because I think Kim’s gotta run to a meeting and we’ve gone way over our time, but it’s been, it’s so interesting to listen to you guys and thank you so much all of you for, for, for coming along and sharing your, sharing your insights around this. I thoroughly enjoy speaking with you always. So
Thanks so much guys. Pleasure. Thanks so much guys.
Thanks very much for listening. Please make sure you share this episode with your friends and business connections and don’t forget to drop us a review.