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Building a future-ready business

posted on Jun 10, 2022 |   700 likes

 

The future is here. Is your business ready?

You didn’t start your business just to watch it crash over things you could have avoided, did you?

The truth is, it’s not going to be business as usual for much longer. Research by global management consultant firm McKinsey estimates that more than half of the existing skills in the workforce will become obsolete in the next few decades.

By implication, if the skills aren’t there, the business is dead, because you wouldn’t have the capability to solve market frictions anymore – which is the whole essence establishing firms.

More employees than ever will leave their companies to pursue entrepreneurship. Companies will be increasingly judged, not just on their products or services, but on their character and social impact.

All this means companies must drastically shift the way they operate. And fundamentally change their idea of what ‘good business’ means.

 

You may also like: Smart Growth Strategies for Your Small Businesses

 

The reigning theory in business has long been that “alpha” leaders make the best entrepreneurs. These are aggressive, results-driven achievers who assert control, and insist on a hierarchical organizational model. Yet, we are seeing more and more success from “beta” startup cultures.

While companies of the past operated on a top-down model in which products were handed down to consumers, and instructions handed down to employees, the future-ready business will be based on bilateral and multi-directional relationships.

And while issues were dealt with on a ‘when we get to it’ basis, being able to solve problems quickly will be the difference between survival and extinction.

For any company with an eye on the future, these 3 characteristics must permeate the very core of its business:

1.     Skills on the fly

 

A future-ready organisation must tackle challenges quickly. In an ever more fast-paced world, a couple of hours could be the difference between success and failure.

 

Which means time will become even more precious. Time wasted in solving a problem, or finding the right people to do so, could be deadly.

 

Finding the right people will be more difficult for companies without a transparent skills ecosystem.

 

As research shows, the current skills available in an organization will become obsolete in a matter of years.

 

This means personnel must be retrained. And quick. Alternatively, employees may upskill themselves on their own initiative, and the company will need a way to surface these new skills.

 

Unfortunately, companies rarely ask for updated CVs, so employees whose skills have improved go unnoticed. This will force the company to look externally. Which means an inconveniently lengthy recruitment process when speed is of the essence.

 

 

2.     Culture of collaboration

 

Companies who believe the role of the supervisor is to instruct, and the role of the subordinate is to receive instructions, are in for a rude awakening.

 

Likewise, companies who believe consumers are passive recipients of goods and services.

 

Cooperation and collaboration is the new norm. Superior technical skills may have seen an employee rise up the ranks in years past, but soft skills are fast replacing technical prowess.

 

More businesses are realizing that leadership is about bringing diverse personalities together, not a one-directional transfer of knowledge.

 

More democratic and linear relationships between supervisors and subordinates, and between colleagues in general, replace the culture of fear with one of mutual respect.

 

This is especially important as more Millennials and Gen Z candidates enter the workforce. These employees are likely to know more about current systems and processes than their seniors.

 

And they’ll be vocal about it. They’ll also expect a more collaborative and congenial company culture. These employees won’t need to be taught the job. Instead, they will expect to be guided on their careers.

 

3.     Purpose over profit

 

Previously, companies could primarily concern themselves with producing better products or services than competitors. Now, they must also worry about being better global citizens.

 

A company is expected to have a personality, a political stance, a worldview.

 

Let’s take Nike as a classic example.

 

Nike has built a powerful brand around ‘Just do it’. It encourages ordinary people to find the courage within themselves to push beyond their limits – just like professional athletes.

 

In recent years, it’s also taken a clear political stance. It is one of the few brands who embraced controversial football player Colin Kaepernick early on.

 

Its alliance with the polarising player saw its stocks lose 3.2% almost instantly. Then the tides turned and Nike found a larger and even more loyal audience, selling out its Kaepernick Icon jersey in mere hours.

 

It’s just one example of the responsibility consumers place on brands to lead conversations, not just in their industry, but also in society.

 

On the Side

 

As technology, business norms, and employee and customer expectations change, companies should take an honest look at themselves. And ask themselves whether they have, or need to cultivate, the 3 crucial characteristics that will make them future-ready.

 

At the center of these pivots is the need to have a firm financial support to deploy changes and rise the tides when the time comes, and this is where Page comes in.

 

With our SME financing product, we are ensuring that money should never be the reason why a business does not reach its potential.

 

We open more doors to SME with up to N20 million in loans, Asset Financing, Invoice financing, LPOs, etc.

 

If you would like to get more details about the Page loan, simply call our customer success team at 017007243 or send an email to customer@pagefinancials.com


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