Business Leaders See Focus on Outcomes as the Baseline for WFH

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New Delhi: Industry leaders came together at an Ashoka University- hosted virtual conference on June 27 on shaping organizations of the future. The conference was addressed by business, finance and industry leaders including like Pramod Bhasin, Founder, Genpact; Amitabh Chaudhry, MD and CEO, Axis Bank; Deep Kalra, Founder and CEO, MakeMyTrip and Ashish Dhawan, Founder and Chairman, Ashoka University. The conference, was held under the Ashoka University – Future of Work banner, on June 27 on Zoom and broadcasted live on YouTube. The conference was attended by over 2000 corporate leaders, HR professionals, students and a variety of audiences from 26 countries.

Sharing his thoughts on the topic ‘Shaping Organizations of the Future’, Amitabh Chaudhry, MD & CEO, Axis Bank said “Most successful organizations will be those that are able to implement the benefits of technology while retaining the creativity and energy of a traditional office. We need clear definitions of work in order to drive a sense of ownership and accountability. Trust between the manager and employee will need nourishment in a remote working environment and new review structures will emerge between manager and the employee. Values and culture would be more important to unite employees in a remote environment. Job definitions, hierarchy and expectations from a manager will change. Crisis gives us an opportunity to create diversity in a meaningful manner, an inclusive environment for differently abled can be created.”

Speaking on the topic ‘Working Anytime, Anywhere and Virtual Internships’, Pramod Bhasin, Founder, Genpact said “Innovation and creativity do not come in a formal setting with fixed work hours and timings. Our ability to work in anyplace anywhere will intrude in our personal lives. When I think about anytime, anywhere and virtual internships as a topic, my first realization is why is this happening so late? Where have our minds been to think about this many years ago?” Further, he said ” In our case for a company like Genpact where 95 percent of our clients were in the US and UK, they were up and awake in our evenings, we naturally ended up working from home. If you go to many parts of the world, many of our executives of Genpact don’t really come to office. We at Clix are absolutely fine and working efficiently and find no reason to be at the office.”

In the session ‘New Skills Post Covid-19: Critical Thinking, Effective Communication, and Social Responsibility’, Aditya Ghosh, Board Member, OYO, said. “As businesses and organisations we need to focus on what is mission critical and figure out what is not as important to focus on. It would be important for businesses to focus on the more affordable product segments as that would continue to be relevant in the lives of consumers as well as help with the recovery. When it comes to the large-scale disruption that the pandemic has brought to the foreand everyone is forced to work from home, one will have to find new ways to keep ears to the ground and efforts will have to be replaced by outcomes with new goals and target setting for individuals. Roles will have to be swinging and agility of an organization will be crucial to the delivery.”

Speaking on young leaders, Deep Kalra, Founder & Group Executive Chairman, MakeMyTrip Ltd. added that, “Our brightest ideas come from the young work force. It is important to give young people an open canvas to work on. If an entrepreneurial spirit can be nurtured and they are allowed to work in their own time, they are capable of coming up with delightful results which can solve most of your present problems. As leaders it is important that we focus on outcomes and assess what each person brings to the table. We need to rethink most of our traditional work-place strategies and allow these new norms to take shape notwithstanding COVID to tap into a larger talent pool who may just be more willing to participate if they are allowed to work from home.”

The conference brought together HR communities, corporate leaders, global thinkers and stakeholders to discuss the future of work practices including working anytime, anywhere, virtual internships, redesigning of the workplace as well as skills that will be essential in the post COVID-19 situation including critical writing, analytical thinking, effective communication and social responsibility. At the conference, industry veterans debated strategic people issues and evolved strategies for optimal business outcomes in India.