- C-suite executives must alter their way of thinking and engage change-agents in order to beat disruptions and lead their organizations into the future, according to researchers at Accenture. The firm's report showed that top company executives are being pressured by fast-moving trends, including consumer expectations, machine learning-powered analytics and lower data costs.
- To handle these disruptions, Accenture researchers said C-suites must adopt a "whole-brain" skill set — using skills that fall under the traditional "right-brain" and "left-brain" categories — to transform their organizations and themselves. According to Accenture, organizations have four categories of workers: "Agitators," "Disenfranchised," "Indifferent" and "Pathfinders." Researchers said the latter consists of positive change-agents who can help lead organizations successfully through disruption. Pathfinders can also help C-suite members close the gap between "the skills and behaviors Pathfinders expect of leaders, and what the C-suite deems important," Accenture said.
- Of 200 global C-suite executives interviewed by Accenture, 85% said the "disruptive nature" of new technologies has grown in intensity, while 74% said the same of shifting customer demands within the past three years. Other potential disruptions included new market entrants (72%) and company investors (62%).
C-suite executives, as the top leaders of their organizations, must have the vision to overcome internal and market-based disruptions and lead their organizations into the future. But in order to understand what trends are impacting day-to-day operations, executives might also adjust their mindset and engage directly with employees, customers and other stakeholders.
"Executives who accept the status quo or who are averse to change will struggle to succeed in a technology-driven future of work," Laurie Zaucha, VP of HR and organizational development at Paychex, previously told HR Dive. Zaucha warned that those who fail to stay on top of trends impacting their organizations will prevent them from making the right investments to grow their businesses.
As employers invest in upskilling workers, they might also need to upskill C-suite members so that they have the skills and know-how to navigate the flood of disruptions they're facing now and into the future.