How to lead the way in hir­ing a new gen­er­a­tion of work­ers for com­pa­nies

Belfast Telegraph - Business Telegraph - - Economy Watch - By maeve hunt, As­so­ciate di­rec­tor, Au­dit, Grant­thorn­ton @grant­thorn­tonni For fur­ther in­for­ma­tion or ad­vice, Maeve Hunt can be con­tacted at maeve.hunt@ie.gt.com Grant Thorn­ton (NI) LLP spe­cialises in au­dit, tax and ad­vi­sory ser­vices

As each year passes, the way pro­fes­sional ser­vices firms re­cruit and what they must of­fer to the new gen­er­a­tion changes. Tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vances have in­vari­ably changed the way we work, with no one able to pre­dict what the fu­ture holds. If cur­rent re­search is ac­cu­rate, Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence may take over many pro­fes­sional ser­vices roles.

How­ever, what is cer­tain is that we must have lead­ers in place who are flex­i­ble to change and with the abil­ity to take ad­van­tage of the pos­i­tive ben­e­fits that new tech­nol­ogy and the new gen­er­a­tion will bring.

We have heard many times that be­ing a good leader takes hon­esty, com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills and be­ing ap­proach­able. What else is be­com­ing clear is that a good leader will need to in­spire, en­sur­ing they are con­nected and rel­e­vant to the new gen­er­a­tion. Lis­ten­ing is key!

Good lead­ers need to con­nect with their team, with greater con­nec­tiv­ity ex­pected through in­no­va­tive me­dia chan­nels and close con­tact con­ver­sa­tions.

The great lead­ers of to­day are closely con­nect­ing with their peo­ple and seek­ing ways for them to drive their busi­ness. Good lead­ers men­tor, de­velop and mo­ti­vate.

To some this may sound New Age, but there is a strong com­mer­cial case also, with busi­nesses as­pir­ing to grow and cre­ate a brand.

The new gen­er­a­tion of pro- fes­sion­als have grown up with tech­nol­ogy as an in­te­gral part of their world. Al­though they bring greater ex­per­tise they also bring greater de­mands, re­fus­ing to ac­cept com­pa­nies who are not up to speed.

Re­search in­di­cates that the new gen­er­a­tion put an em­pha­sis on cor­po­rate so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity, care of the en­vi­ron­ment and are of­ten more in­ter­ested in ex­pe­ri­ence and work-life bal­ance than ma­te­rial things.

Di­ver­sity is also in the fore­front of ev­ery­one’s mind when pro­mot­ing ta­lent. Busi­nesses must build and im­ple­ment work­place so­lu­tions that un­lock the po­ten­tial for a di­verse and in­clu­sive work­place. Di­ver­sity is key to busi­ness suc­cess.

With a di­verse mix­ture of peo­ple, a busi­ness is bet­ter pre­pared for all even­tu­al­i­ties. Rec­om­men­da­tions to help make this hap­pen in­clude tak­ing ac­tion and speak­ing up through­out an or­gan­i­sa­tion (not just at the top), en­cour­ag­ing di­verse lead­er­ship styles, role mod­els and in­vest­ing in spon­sor­ship pro­grammes.

With all this in mind, busi­nesses have a duty to be flex­i­ble and em­brace changes in tech­nol­ogy, flex­i­ble work­ing and cul­ture. It re­quires work­places to col­lab­o­rate, be agile and cre­ative. In or­der to at­tract the bright­est and best ta­lent, we need to de­velop cul­tures that fit with ev­ery gen­er­a­tion.

We must re­ward ta­lent and en­cour­age lead­ers of the fu­ture. In the words of John Quincy Adams: “If your ac­tions in­spire oth­ers to dream more, learn more, do more and be­come more, you are a leader.”

If a busi­ness can im­ple­ment this cul­ture, great lead­ers are born no mat­ter what their age.

❝ In or­der to at­tract the bright­est ta­lent we need to de­velop cul­tures that fit with ev­ery gen­er­a­tion

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