People Matters August 2022: What will the future of work look like?

Page 1


3226 Business and HR Leaders 45M Impressions 170 Speakers 85 Sessions 09 &MentorsInvestors 83 HR & Work Tech Solution Providers Thank you for making TechHR India 2022 a huge success 25 HR & TechWorkStartups

TechHR ‘22 PARTNERS Financial Wellness Partner Smartest Employee Fintech Tool Unconference Partner AsiaPac’s Choice of HR Tech Official Interview Partner Strategic PartnerCommunication ESOP Partner

Building the future of work together

The policies and processes that we develop and imple ment today will form the foundation of the organi sational culture and values that we cherish tomorrow: how we lead, how we man age our teams, how we bal ance business, people, and community priorities. To de termine the future of work, we must review and evalu ate what we are doing in the present day. Are we respond ing appropriately to macro trends in our industry, community, and geographical location? Have we developed a level of agility sufficient to navigate a world that's gone from VUCA (Volatile, Uncer tain, Complex, Ambiguous) to BANI (Brittle, Anxious, Non-linear, Incomprehensi ble)?The answers to those ques tions, among others, are the best indicator of what our individual futures will look like, and what shape the col lective future of work will take.Inthis issue's cover story, we bring together assorted views and experiences of what companies are doing today to secure the working world of tomorrow. Industry leaders and domain experts such as Kristin Trecker, CHRO of Visteon, Stephen Bovis of Hewlett Packard Enterprise in the South Pa cific, and Indraneel Kumar Das, Head of L&D at Byjus, offer a range of perspectives and plans for the future of work.Our Big Interview features Brandi Galvin Morandi, Global CHRO and Chief Le gal Officer of Equinix, who

The broad structures that the community – local and international – put in place now, starting with overarching national or even global legislation and standards touching on work and the workplace, will shape how we think and act a decade down the road.

The future of work has always been a topic of fascination, and never more so than in the last few years. What will the work place of the next decade look like? How will people work? What will the priorities be and how will policies and processes support these? What technologies will we use, and how do we integrate and the new generations of employees who come with vastly different expectations from the older workforce? As we speculate and make our preparations, however, we need to keep one thing in mind: the future of work is already upon us. The present day that we live in is the future that we won dered about in 2019 and 2020, before the pandemic. And the future that we cast our minds ahead to is what we are building today.

4 | August 2022 eskditor’stheFromedFromtheeditor’sdesk

Talent Analytics: Driving Organizational Impact (19 September to 21 October); Strategizing Organizational L&D: ProductivityPerformance,&Impact(26 September to 28 October); Agile Culture for HR Teams (10 October to 11 Novem ber); Reframing Your C&B Strategy: Agility, Equity and Sustainability (31 October – 02 November). You can reach out to for more information and to enroll.People Matters BeNext has shown us all, over the past year, how interconnected community and learning are. Now that we have ex tended our virtual learning programmes to leaders in Spanish-speaking countries, we anticipate even greater levels of diversity, inclusion, and community development upon the platform. As always, we welcome your views, comments, and suggestions regarding our stories. Happy Reading! Esther Martinez Hernandez Editor in-ChiEf Follow F > estermartinez >

5August 2022 | brings together both the HR viewpoint and the legal viewpoint for a holistic look at the future of HR and the workplace.Wejustwrapped our flag ship TechHR conference, the India edition on 4 Au gust and the SEA editin on 25 August, with a fantastic response from the commu nity. It's been our privilege and pleasure to host all of you both virtually and in person, to look at the world of work with #FreshEyes and rethink what's possible. Our heartfelt thanks to all our partners, speakers, and participants: this awesome community event was made possible by each and every one of Peopleyou.Matters BeNext, our cohort-based certifica tion programme, launches four fascinating new cours es in the coming months.

M > @Ester_Matters eskditor’stheFromedTHE COVER STORY (BEHIND THE SCENE) Quit Awesomegames!playing2022AUGUSTISSUEXIIIVOL

People Matters Publishing Pvt. Ltd.

Tuition Centre 48 Winning the

NotE to tHE READERS the views expressed in articles are those of the authors and do not reflect the views of people matters. Although all efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the content, neither the editors nor the publisher can take responsibility for consequences arising from errors or omissions in the information provided. reproduction in any manner without prior permission from the publisher is prohibited. leadership needs upskilling pHEn BoviS, Managing Director South Pacific at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Revision': HR leaders need to stewards of company culture EcKEr, CHRO of Visteon Corporation automation, metaverse will build new careers arad MEHra, CEO (APAC) of Global University Systems are all living in Mar daS, Head of L&D at Byjus war H, Author of The Digital Workforce of QuanE, Regional Director for for Grov Consultant, Clinton HR

Asia, ECA International 53 The war


the age of chaos' indranEEl Ku


human capital management consultancy Smart WFM 50 What's next for talent mobility? lEE

45 'We

contents August volume2022xIIIIssue8 Coverstory 34 As work and the workplace continues to evolve, we must constantly look ahead for the challenges and opportunities of the future 36 Why

6 | August 2022 tsoCNteN

39 'Role

owNed by People Matters Publishing Pvt. Ltd. published At: 501, 5th Floor, millennium plaza, tower A, sushant lok-1, sector-27, gurgaon122009, haryana, india. tel: +91 (0) 124-414

talent and the future of work clinton Win

E, Principal


42 Technology,

KriStin tr

for talent by building serious digital muscle Jarrod McGrat

this issue oF PEOPlE maTTERS CoNtAiNs 83 pAges iNCludiNg Cover editor-iN-ChieF Esther Martinez Hernandez editor & New produCt CoNteNt strAtegist (globAl) Mastufa Ahmed mANAger - desigN, photogrAphy, ANd produCtioN Marta Martinez seNior editors Mint RachelKangRanosa seNior mANAger - reseArCh ANd CoNteNt strAtegy - ApAC Jerry Moses seNior AssoCiAtes - CoNteNt Sudeshna Mitra | Asmaani Kumar Ajinkya Salvi | Aastha Gupta Samriddhi Srivastava AssoCiAte editor Mamta Sharma digitAl heAd Prakash Shahi desigN & produCtioN Shinto Kallattu seNior mANAger - globAl sAles ANd pArtNerships Saloni Gulati mANAger - subsCriptioN Sumali Das Purkyastha psumali.purkyastha@gopeoplematters.comublishedby

for climate change StE

and the

and CEO

7August 2022 | tsoCNteN Featured In thIs Issue BrAndI morAndI dAnIel KAhnemAn IndrAneel KumAr dAs KrIstIn trecKer nAnd KIshore chAudhAry shArAd mehrA sIdhArth mAlIK stephen BovIs clInton WIngrove JArrod mcgrAth lee QuAne m muneer rItA mcgrAth sIgAl Atzmon vIsty BAnAJI COntrIButOrs tO thIs Issue regulArs 04 From the Editor’s Desk 08 Letters of the month 10 Quick Reads 15 Rapid Fire 78 Knowledge + Networking The story of Jaipur Rugs, a business "built by love" By nand KiSHorE cHaudHary, MD and Chairman of Jaipur Rugs 30 l e A dersh I p Executive Presence and how HR leaders can master it By MaMta SHarMa 68 l e A dersh I p Planning to take a career risk? Smart lessons from a CEO’s career By rita McGratH, professor at Columbia Business School and founder of Valize and and M MunEEr, Co-Founder and Chief Evangelist at the non-profit Medici Institute 72 t he ro A d less tr A velled Beware of the deceitful impression manager By viSty BanaJi, Founder and CEO of Banner Global Consulting (BGC) 80 Blogosphere The new paradigm: well-being for a new age workforce By SiGal atzMon, Founder and CEO at Medix Global 22eW HR as businessTransformingaccelerator:theforthe future Brandi Morandi, Chief Legal and Human Resources Officer techhr Five judgementimprovemantraspragmatictoworkplace daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize winner By Samriddhi Srivastava 57 Genpact Leveraging digital and AI tools for impact: Genpact (Banking & Capital Markets Vertical) 58 Juniper Using technology to create comprehensive employee care 59 Maxlife Insurance Supporting employee wellness with AI for smarter solutions Champions Well-being:of programmeofWinnerstheBestWellness 60 Wipro Strengthening employee wel fare using data-driven decisions 61 Infosys Creating multifaceted wellness initiatives and addressing worklife balance 62 Zomato De-stigmatizing mental health and encouraging open conver sations 63 Cognizant Diverse benefits and gamifica tion for success 64 Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd. Creating healthy competition for better engagement 65 Tech Mahindra Limited Promoting Wellness First 66 Expleo Establishing frequent connec tions with leadership and ensur ing robust communication 67 Rockwell Automation Pvt. Ltd. Make wellness a part of your culture well-beiNg 56

Letters of the month

- aNjalI BaTRa


8 | August 2022 August 2022 issuemotheolettersdsCQuikreAFNth

- PRIYam SINgHal Leaders ought to accept they don't have a LL the answers 100% agreement with the sentiment that hybrid working model and in fact any and every successful working model rests on the managers and the leaders. An organisation's transition of any kind is made by the people on the teams but executed by the managers of those teams and their own managers, who are the leadership. Change is either driven by the managers and leaders, or it is held back by them, there are no two ways about it.

- aNuSHka kaNT

What is leadership?

The impact of inflation on the new world of work Good that this is being talked about more, inflation is going to be the biggest problem that we face in the next few years. Already when we hire, the first thing people care about is whether the pay is enough in this environment of inflation. I am not too sure about whether hybrid or flexible can really be a changemaking factor to compensate for the inflation. But it is worth a try.

Embrace hard truths to develop effective leaders

Loving the seven keys to success. We need more such concise tips, especially for new leaders, who are navigating their position for the first time. Best of all, these keys do not need to be prac tised in the physical setting. That's important, because nowadays not everybody has the opportunity to try lead ing in person before they lead virtually.

A very enjoyable read with great pointers about how to avoid wishful thinking and shallow impressions. Lead ership development is such a profit-making industry these days that we must be truly sceptical of all these trainings and solutions be ing pushed on the market. Are they truly effective or do they just put a shiny coat of paint over a poor quality wall that's falling apart?

- SuNITa SHaRma Loyalty is a two-way street This is a great take on loyalty, too often we have employers that expect a lifetime loyalty from people but do not hesitate to abuse and misuse that loyalty or even throw it away entirely for office politics. There must be more focus on clos ing the gap between what the employer aspires to and what really goes on in the workplace. Otherwise, employers that treat people like commodities should not be surprised if employees then treat the job like a commodity.

We had believed that DEI is improved by hybrid and flexible work but strangely this is not always the case. The leaders who say that DEI is a continuing journey are indeed correct. Hybrid is more of a place to apply DEI, than a solution to boost DEI. For e.g: A company that is pro-DEI will be proDEI even without hybrid, while a company that does not support DEI will be like that no matter how flexible the policies try to be.

9August 2022 | GlobalLogic India @GlobalLogic_IN @PeopleMatters2 quotes GlobalLogic’s Rajesh Rai, VP – People Team & Head of HR, India. On the occasion of #Inde pendenceDay, the article discusses what #freedom means to #HR leaders for the #future of #work. #Tech #Business #Career #People #Culture #Jobs Clevertap@Clevertap In the latest piece by @PeopleMatters2, Sidharth Malik, CEO, shares insights on how the post-pandemic world requires companies to build a culture with a strong sense of purpose and values that suits their talent: Global talent Exchange@globaltalex Global Talent Exchange was part of Asia’s largest HR & WorkTech Conference organized by @PeopleMatters2 Read our latest blog - in which we’ve recounted our experience at #TechHRIN 2022. #globaltalentexchange #gtx #techtalent #peoplematters #hrtech AgroStar@agrostar_in Our VP-People Practices @priyanjali_k & her views on the changing trends in #PeoplePractices & #WorkforceManage ment & how she drives & unleashes the power of #HumanCapital at AgroStar. Thank You @PeopleMatters2 for covering our perspectives. @SodexoIndiaClub@SodexoIndiaClub And it’s a wrap for #TechHR 2022! It was a delightful experience meeting Industry Practitioners. Thank you @PeopleMat ters2 for having us. It's always a delight to be part of TechHR. Thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth Commvault Asia@CommvaultAsia Ramesh Kalanje addresses the ques tion of the hour - how does one build a #productive environment in a #hybrid setup. More in this @PeopleMatters2 arti cle as he shares a few important tenets that can be valuable in leading a changing hybrid #workforce - {WRITE TO US NOW BY SCANNING THIS CODE} Follow M > @PeopleMatters2 people matters values your feedback. write to us with your suggestions and ideas at editorial@peoplematters.inInteract with People Matters



- aNTONY THaRakaN Key strategies to drive DEI efforts in the hybrid world of work

- VIkaS gaRg

Treating your employees like adults Being a 'leader' does not somehow make a person into a 'super adult' who is qualified to treat those around them like children. This is an important lesson all leaders need to learn, and the sooner the better. Leaders also cannot and should not do anything themselves, for they will burn out if they do not learn to trust and delegate. They will also drive away their best people with such lack of trust. This is an other important lesson that must be repeated often.

What are we doing to develop leaders for the hybrid model? Surprising to hear that com panies are not really chang ing their leadership model but still relying on surface competencies. Surely we have moved into a new generation of leadership by now? Or we are perhaps still bogged down in old colonialist styles of leadership that we somehow cannot shake off, so it is af fecting even how we look at changes to the leadership model.

Google announced that its third data centre facility in Singa pore, the construction of which it announced in 2018, has been completed and is in operation, bringing the company’s long-term tocentresdatagaporeinmentsinvestSinUS$850 million. Along with the development of infrastructure, the tech giant will enhance its skill training programme, known as Skills Ignition SG (SISG), which was launched in 2020. The programme has overseen 5,500 certifications. It will also extend 60 Singaporeans an enhanced traineeship programme with twelve months of full-time train ing in digital marketing or profes sional cloud architecture.

15Five has raised $52 million in funding to accelerate growth and innovation. The Series C fund ing round is led by Quad Part ners with additional funding from previous investors Next47, Origin Ventures, Edison Partners, Matrix Partners, Point Nine Capital, and New Ground Ventures. 15Five’s last raise was a B round of $30.7 million in 2019. The company will use this new round of funding to invest in R&D to further connect the ability to measure perfor mance (via engagement surveys, performance reviews, and OKRs) and accelerate the integration of software with coaching, so manag ers can impact team performance more effectively and efficiently. to $424 million since inception. This latest growth investment is intended to support HiBob in capitalising on its market leader ship as the company continues to execute on key business priorities in the current market environ ment, the company said in a state ment.

10 | August 2022 dsCQuikreA

Gartner: Fewer workers are on a job hunt

rEcruit ME nt

The number of workers in Aus tralia actively looking for a new job has dropped for the first time in three quarters, a new study says. Research firm Gartner recently polled 855 employees as part of its Global Labor Market Survey. The company found that the number of workers in active job search has decreased to 17% in the second quarter of 2022. While the figure is only slightly lower compared to the 18% in 1Q22, it is the first time it has happened in three quarters.

Telco giant Vodafone Idea to facilitate access to 40,000 jobs in Gujarat Vodafone Idea [Vi] will facilitate access to 40,000 jobs in Gujarat with the job-seeking platform Apna, giv ing employment opportunities to Indian youth. These job opportuni ties have come up in the last three months as Ahmedabad, Surat and Vadodara markets experienced the highest interest in Sales & Market ing jobs from maximum applicants.

Google centerporeinvestmentsstrengthensinSinga-withitsthirddatafacility

H r tEc H nolo Gy HiBob raises $150 million Series D up-round led by General Atlantic HiBob, the company behind Bob the HR platform, today announced it has raised an additional $150 million in growth funding, just ten months after raising a $150 million Series C in October 2021. Led by General Atlantic, a lead ing global growth equity firm, and with participation from Besse mer Venture Partners and other insiders, HiBob’s Series D round takes the company’s valuation to $2.45 billion and total funding

Performance management startup 15Five raises $52 million Series C Performance management startup

Ford cuts 3,000 jobs in US, India as it pivots to a software future

in light of COVID-19. As per the agreement, the company and work ers represented by the Communi cations Workers of America (CWA) agreed to extend the work-fromhome solution until March 2023. Yet as per recent news reports, a lot of workers are being forced to return to the office sooner than decided. Also, some department managers have already forced their workers to be back in the office.

11August 2022 | QuiCkreAds E M ploy EE Exp E ri E nc E

The Nanyang Technological Uni versity, Singapore (NTU Singapore) survey found that 46.2To protect workers against COVID-19, govern ments requested companies shift from an office setup to a remote one. Instead of face-to-face meet ings, many employees attended virtual meetings using software such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom.

Dial it down!

Online meetings cause burnout

Work from home is a mandate that many organisations have picked up on in the new world of work. According to a tech talent outlook survey by job site SCIKEY, 82% of employees prefer to work from home rather than follow the pri mordial adage “work only happens in cubicles and office space”. Yet it does seem many companies are not exactly onboard with following the work-from-home solution to the tee. As per various media sources, telecommunications giant AT&T is breaking away from its WFH agreement, which was agreed upon

In an effort to catch up to the competition for software-driven electric vehicles, Ford Motor says it will eliminate 3,000 salaried and contract positions worldwide, largely in North America and India. As the auto industry transi tions toward electric vehicles and digital services, Ford's CEO, Jim Farley, has expressed his belief that the Dearborn, Michiganbased manufacturer employs too many people and does not have the skills it needs to succeed.

AT&T back"beingemployeesforced"togotooffice

Wayfair CEO Niraj Shah lays off five per cent of the company’s global workforce workforce. As per the various media sources, the major reason is the non-fruition of growth targets which were anticipated this year. Along with the lay offs, the company also said that it is in the process of making substantial reductions in its third-party labour costs.


E M ploy EE ManaGEME nt Google workers fear layoffs amid hiring freeze Employees at Google could soon find themselves on the chopping block if their performance doesn't meet the company’s expectations soon. Last month, Google CEO Sundar Pichai revealed the compa ny’s plans to help improve the per formance of its workers through its Simplicity Sprint program. Aside from Google’s stricter performance guidelines, the company also an nounced that it will freeze its hir ing of new workers for two weeks. However, Google hasn’t lifted the measure even though the two-week period has already lapsed. This has left many workers in the company to fear about their job security. However, "Zoom fatigue" is real. Using video conferencing plat forms daily during the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened the ex haustion of employees by 50%, a new study in Singapore revealed.

12 | August 2022 dsCQuikreA

NewsmAker oF the moNth

Evolving outside In an interview to Vouge, announcing her decision to resign from the sport, Serena said that she is evolving away from tennis. “ "Maybe the best word to describe what I'm up to is evolution”, she noted.

Serena Williams will end her stellar career with the US Open in 2022. She’s won 23 singles grand slam championships, 14 doubles and two mixed slams, which makes her one of the most successful tennis play ers in the open era. In her 27-year-long career, she broke numerous records. Williams is the only player (male or female) to win three of the four grand slams six times (US Open, Australian Open,WilliamsWimbledon).hasspent 186 consecutive weeks as the topranked WTA player, jointmost with Steffi Graf. Her journey to tennis stardom is unparalleled in her genera tion.But her journey wasn’t always bright. Her career is marked by ups and downs.

“I'm evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me.", said the tennis star. Over the years, Serena invested in 66 startups - 78 % of whose founders are women and people of colour. The movie based on her father’s life, “King Richard” earned six Oscar nominations last year. Serena’s career and legacy hold many lessons in build ing resilience and fighting through bouts of adversity in one’s life.

By Jerry Moses

Biases and sport It wasn’t always her play that made the news. Serena Williams boycotted the Indian Wells tournament for fourteen consecutive years when the crowd racially abused Williams and her family. She later noted that the experi ence haunted her for a long time.In2009, Williams abused a line judge in her semi-final match with Kim Clijsters; that incident put her on twoyear probation for “aggravated behaviour”. Many felt that similar outbursts by male players were often ignored.Asimilar incident in 2018 led to conversations around the sexist attitudes at play. This year, when a male player smashed his racket at the Umpire's chair and received a six-week suspension, Serena was quick to point out the double standards in the sport.

An icon of resilience - Serena Williams

rtiv appoint S cHE ryl l i M t HE n EW c H ro

Critical digital service provider Vertiv has announced the appointment of Cheryl Lim as the company’s new Chief Human Resources Officer. She will report directly to CEO Rob Johnson and lead the development and execution of HR strat egy in support of Vertiv’s business goals. Lim brings more than two decades of expe rience leading human resources teams, supporting organisational transformation, and supplying data-driven insights for global HR operations in the manufactur ing space. Prior to joining Vertiv, she spent more than 20 years holding various HR leadership positions at Honeywell and was most recently the vice president of Human Resources at ITT Inc.

13August 2022 |

r EW B E v E raGES appoint S Man M o H an S Kal Sy a S c H ro Global beverage company Inbrew Beverages has appointed Manmohan S Kalsy as Chief Human Resources Officer, report ing to the CEO and MD. A seasoned human resources professional with proven business partnering and organisation building capabilities across manufacturing, FMCG, telecom, technology and outsourcing indus try at most admired workplaces, Kalsy last served as vice president and head of human resources at airline company Go First, reporting to the CEO. Previously, he was a member of Vodafone’s operations board on a global business transformation project. His earlier stints were with United Breweries ,Vodafone, Triveni Engineering & Industries, Bharti Airtel and PepsiCo among others.

yr ES appoint S ar G H o SH a S Group r Dipankar Ghosh has joined Apollo Tyres as group head of human resources for the Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa (APMEA) region. Ghosh comes with 25 years of diverse experience in leading FMCG, automobile and service industries, in the domain of HR business partnering, stra tegic human resource initiatives, talent assurance, policy making and employee relations. He joins Apollo Tyres from Bajaj Consumer Care, where he was the CHRO, leading the HR, ER and administration function of the FMCG company. Prior to that, he was with Diageo. He also spent a large part of his career with Tata Motors, managing multiple roles.

irlpool c orporation H EM lata Go E l ad it S G lo Bal Bac K and aS ia H r op E raGlobal home appliance manu facturer Whirlpool Corporation has appointed Hemlata Goel as director of its global back office (GBO) and Asia HR operations. Based out of Gurugram, India, Goel will lead the support of global HR services. She brings over 18 years of diverse HR experience to Whirlpool, having worked extensively into HR trans formation and integration during merg ers and acquisitions, leading global shared services and HR operations. Previously, she has managed diverse portfolios and led HR teams across geographies at AxtriaIngenious Insights, SHL (Former Garter), Alcon, WNS Global Services and InterContinental Hotels amongst others.


Marriott i nt E rnational MES v inay Ja SWal S E nior ctor H r for Sout H aS ia Marriott International has appointed Vinay Jaswal to the role of Senior Director HR for South Asia. Jaswal, who has close to two decades of working experience in the HR domain, previ ously served as HR Head-South-West Asia at IHG Hotels and Resorts. Known for busi ness building and culture transformation, he has also served at Hughes Communications India Ltd, Aviva Life Insurance, iDiscoveri Education Pvt Ltd, InterGlobe Air Transport Limited, InterGlobe Hotels among others.

Brillio appoint S c a M i E HE l M ir E a S cH i E f pEopl E ffic E r

Digital transformation services and solutions provider

Brillio has appointed Camie Shelmire as Chief People Officer. A technology and consulting industry veteran who most recently served as chief client officer of Altran Americas and after its acquisition by Capgemini, executive vice president in the combined entity, Shelmire brings 20 years of leadership experience in talent, client strategy, and operations. Based in Dallas, TX, she will lead the compa ny’s talent strategy. She will also serve on Brillio’s executive committee and report directly to its chairman, founder and CEO, ration partn E r S appoint S Suparna Ba S ua S cH i E f pEopl E E r

Global partnership market ing agency Acceleration Partners has appointed Suparna Basu-Ravis as its Chief People Officer and Global Head of Human Resources. The appointment has been effec tive since June 2022, but the role is a newly created one and was only announced in August. Basu-Ravis most recently served as Senior Vice President - Senior Human Resources Business Partner, Investor Services at Brown Brothers Harriman. She also served as Head of Human Resources for Service Delivery and Technology, and previ ously worked at Moody's, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley in various roles.

EM ar appoint S Jo H n B Ec KH a S Group d ir Ector of M an rES ourc ES Global advisory firm Brae mar has appointed John Beck with as Group Director of Human Resources, responsible for leading HR strat egies which will be adopted and followed by all the fourteen offices across the world. Beckwith is also an expert in M&A and restructuring, having been the people/HR subject-matter expert on multiple mergers, demergers, and acquisitions throughout his career. Before Braemar, he was the Head of HR at ED&F Man Capital Markets, based in London, UK. He also counts OEC Connec tion, Clarkson-Platou and MF Global as his previous employers.

| Qui r na MES M EE na Ku M ari r cH i E f pEopl E o ffic E r Customer service platform

Hiver has appointed Meena Kumari R as its Chief People Officer. With over fifteen years of experience across various tech and SaaS startups, her areas of expertise include building and developing a fully remote and globally distributed team. Previously, Meena was the Global Human Resources Head at Airmeet, and before that she led the HR department at Circles.Life and was the head HRBP at Capillary Technolo gies. She is also the founder of a global HR community, The HR Folks.

Start catering to the new talent pool, align their work culture to suit the generationsyounger9

Top uses of technology in the current landscape? Improve processes and customer 4experiences

Chief Executive Officer at CleverTap

Your own priorities for 2022 and beyond? Growth and expansion, adding to our leadership team, innovation on our product offerings – they help in increasing productivity, making employees more efficient and delivering better and faster results 6

By Mastufa Ahmed


Rapid-Fire Sidharth Malik

So what companiesshoulddo?

Your own use of technology? Enabling our customers to understand and engage with their users better 5

15August 2022 |

What's the top change in the post-pandemic tech industry landscape? Technology adoption; tech companies have had to focus not only on innovation and digital transformation but also on sustainability, collaboration, and 2agility



t e N Questio N s i N terview

How is your own company implementing hybrid? We have left it to employees to choose if they’d like to work remotely or from the office until 2023.

Will that help with the Great Attrition?

As long as companies continue to listen and evolve along with their employees, leaders will be able to address the attrition problem and ascertain ways to retain employeestheir10

What about the Resignation?Great Companies should introspect on why employees are

How do you see the hybrid model playing out? Hybrid work models are 7

What tools are tech companies adopting? State-of-the-art data centre and edge capabilities, cloud computing, Internet-of-Thingscustomisedtopredictanyissues,senseandreportinputsacrossdistributednetworks,etc3

HR as tHe acceleRatoR: tRansfoRming business foR tHe futuRe

Over the course of 19 years with Equinix, Morandi served as interim CHRO three times, and the last time, in 2018, coincided with the appointment of the new global CEO, Charles Meyers. Meyers began his tenure by develop ing a transformation strategy for the company, and Morandi, as interim CHRO, took the lead on a number of projects. She estab lished an excellent rapport and operating cadence with Meyers and continued strengthening her relationship with the HR leader ship team, building on 16 years of trust with the rest executive team, and eventually, Meyers asked her to serve as CHRO per manently – which she accepted alongside her role as Chief Legal Officer. Your legal background is unique among HR leaders! How

16 bigiNterview hr ANd trANsFormAtioN go hANd iN hANd uNder the right leAdership. iN AN exClusive CoNversAtioN with people mAtters, BRaNDI mORaNDI, the ChieF legAl ANd humAN resourCes oFFiCer oF eQuiNix, tells us how she ANd her teAm hAve built AN iNCredibly stroNg ANd uNiQue positioN iN the exeCutioN oF the busiNess strAtegy

By Mint Kang Brandi Galvin Morandi, the Chief Legal and Human Resources Officer of global digital infra structure company Equinix, has an unusual background for a HR leader. She started her career in law and spent over five years as a corporate attorney with international business law firm Gunderson Dettner before moving to Equinix in 2003, where she took on the roles of Chief Legal Officer, General Counsel, and Secretary.Inthatposition, Morandi built a very strong working relationship with the human resources leaders and the HR function, such that when leadership turnover meant an interim CHRO was needed in 2013, she was appointed to the role while still performing her origi nal role in the law department. It was not the last time.

17 bigiNterview


There are two main ways. First ly, on the legal side a great deal of focus is placed on understand ing the company's risk profile and the risks that you're taking on. As an in-house lawyer you must either know how to mitigate that risk, or be willing to accept it. You're constantly in a state of compromise, and the easiest thing is to just say, “No, you can't do that.” What's hard is creating an avenue to achieve the goal while still mitigating risk, and so a deep understanding of the business is required: you must know what's really important and critical, what is that line in the sand that you will not cross from a risk perspective, and where you can be flexible. That knowledge and deep un derstanding of working with all of the different functions across the team translates really well into understanding what is going to be an effective people strategy. Secondly, within the legal function there is a mindset where we must solve for the business and prioritise such that we are applying our critical, precious resources toward the most im portant things, filtering out the bulk of what is not as important and focusing our efforts to really try to move the needle on those critical few things. This translates well across both teams, especially because in HR, it's very easy to get excited about our own programmes. Wearing my legal hat helps me to keep looking through that lens of solving for the busi ness strategy, ensuring that what we're delivering will be used and is relevant for what we're trying to do at the time. It shapes a cer tain mindfulness around making good use of resources, both from a dollars perspective and a people perspective. Tell us about the HR function at Equinix. How are you leading HR to play a role in the transformation strategy? At Equinix, HR is not at all a back office function. Across the board, and especially within the executive team, HR is very much seen as a as a business enabler and accelerator. We have been leading from the front on the transforma tion to enable the business's strat egy: our team is actually the site of the Transformation Office. And a big part of that is because if you don't have the right people work ing on the right things and exhibit ing the right behaviours, you can't meet your strategic objectives. What we discussed earlier, about coming into HR from a different part of the business, also plays a role in our ability to drive trans

18 | August 2022 does it influence the way you approach HR matters?

19August 2022 | formation. I know what it feels like to be a customer of HR. So when we're strategising or even just thinking about how we want to communicate our plans, I can hear it through a different ear and find a way to present it that makes sense to the rest of the business. For instance, if we want to launch a particular talent strat egy, we need to make sure that people understand how this is going to help us achieve the busi ness results we want to achieve. And of course, I have also established a wonderful, trust based relationship with my CEO. He knows that I personally, and functionally everyone in HR, are in service to the Equinix agenda to make sure that the business's success is our success. And so he sees us as a key partner.

If you don't have the right people working on the right things and exhibiting the right behaviours, you can't meet your strategic objectives to do what's best for Equinix. There must be a willingness to say: “I don't know what to do next. Can you help me?” and to invest in one another. I think that's really important, because you build the most trust when people know that they don't have to be perfect, that we are going to find the right solution together and not be fixed to any one person's perspective. And that touches on diversity, equity, and inclusion – it goes straight into the core tenets of what inclusion looks like. Is everybody contribut ing their unique ideas for a better outcome?


Trust-based relationships are so important in the world of work, especially after the last few years. Can you share some tips on building that critical level of trust? First, it starts at the personal level: with never compromising your integrity. When I talk to our more junior leaders, I always tell them that as you progress in your career, it's all about people trust ing your judgement, because if it was straightforward and clearly within a process or a guideline, it wouldn't land on your desk. In every interaction that you have, I believe you're either building or eroding trust. And transparency is impor tant: following through on your commitments, wearing your corporate hat rather than pursu ing your functional or personal agenda. Those are all ways to build trust over time, and when you get to a role like mine, where I'm sitting in front of the board and advising – whether it's from a legal perspective or an HR per spective – they know that I am coming from a place of genuinely recommending what I think is best for Equinix with no personal agenda involved. The other way I think that you can build trust is through vulnerability, being able, as a leader, to acknowledge that I don't have all the answers, and that's why I sur round myself with other highly competent people who also want

20 | August 2022 bigiNterview

Going back to the strong understanding of risks that you've gained from your legal back ground, what do you see as the greatest human capital risks that organisations face today?

One risk that everybody is monitoring is, of course, the Great Resignation. There's a lot involved here: how deep in an orYou build the most trust when people know that they don't have to be perfect, that we are going to find the right solution together and not be fixed to any one person's perspective

our existing space, let alone a new environment.Anotherthing that's top of mind coming out of the pandemic is employee wellness. I think over all, there is a lot of fatigue in the system. People have been through a lot personally and profession ally, whether they are managing or leading or just showing up every day with a good attitude. And so we need to make sure that we're taking great care of our employ ees from a wellness perspective as well, as part of an overall reten tion strategy. And then of course, as we bring people back into the office and follow a global strategy of moving to a hybrid work en vironment, we need to look into how we can keep people engaged and productive yet also offer this flexibility that they have come to enjoy. Discussions of risk usually involve processes and governance as part of risk management –do you think this approach works for HR? I think it can work in some areas where the risks are compli ance based risks: local employ ment laws, for example. But it's important to remember that one size does not always fit all in HR, especially when it comes to people. This is not only from a legal and regulatory perspective, but also the cultural element and what is really going to resonate with the team. In my experience, rigidity isn't always the best or the most effective approach. We need to find something that's locally accept able while still broadly following global standards – we always need ganisation will it go, is it impacting tech or frontline, what is hap pening with the attrition rates, how is compensation holding up against changing market standards? We have to pay attention to a lot of different metrics and data to make sure that we aren't go ing to lose people. And that's just retention. Attraction of top talent is another issue, and this one is particularly acute for us because we're going through a strategic transformation and thinking dif ferently about our products and services. And so we're trying to attract new types of skill sets into the company in order to make sure that we can be competitive in

In short, vulnerability and ac knowledging that you don't have all the answers, and then just doing what you say you're going to do time and time again. That's a very practical way to build trust in the organisation.

Transformation and HR will inter lock around culture.

21August 2022 | bigiNterview to make sure that we're looking through that local lens. This can be complicated, because some times when we want to move for ward with a global process, it can be out of step with the local market, or vice versa. And of course, local markets can be vastly differ ent even within the same country. That said, I do think it's possible to trickle global standards down to local markets without encountering major friction. It requires a lot of attention and investment, but it can be done. Take DE&I as an example: we have global protocols and global employee connection networks, what some companies call employee resource groups. And we also have a local forum to take these global prin ciples and discuss them in a way that feels relevant for the local market. Our values are non-nego tiable – that is the global protocol – but how that shows up in any given market may look different. What do you think the future of HR will look like, maybe in the next few years or even in the next decade? I think there's going to be more prominence around the role of HR as change accelerators and enablers. The concept of what change looks like in an organisa tion is going to explode, and HR will have to be there to help the organisation accelerate the pace of decisions and change. There will be a cultural element to it for sure: maintaining what's great about your existing culture, but then introducing the new behav iours and skills that are going to be required to achieve your stra tegic direction. And HR will defi nitely have to spend a lot of time getting employees into the right mindset, because most people start from a place of not liking change. The industry is moving fast. We've just been through an un precedented time, but business momentum never stopped, and now there's a backlog of execution coming. We have to be prepared to support and enable it, and even hopefully accelerate it. For this, HR itself will need to undergo a shift of mindset, from being a curator of processes to an enabler of business strategy. There is always a certain pres sure towards consumerisation of HR, and while this will continue, there also must be constant atten tion given to the question of how we are integrating into overall business process and strategy. HR is going to drive the behaviours that are required, by compensat ing people, giving them the tools that they need, incentivising them to achieve the business strategy.

Decision bias is pervasive within our society and is similarly highly prev alent within the work place. Nobel laureate Professor Daniel Kahneman, the pioneer of behavioural economics, has dedi cated his life to understanding the psychology of judgment and deci sion-making, and in his groundbreaking research, he demon strated one simple truth – people are not immune to prejudice and favouritism because it would be difficult to function without them. However, implementing strategies to reduce bias in the workplace can do wonders.

While the Great Resigna tion continues to test HR lead ers, we must find effective ways to eliminate bias to improve the employee experience and busi ness outcomes. To learn ways our thinking can be flawed and to make more informed and rational decisions, we sat down with Professor Kahneman at People Matters TechHR Singapore, and came away with five valuable mantras that you can use in dayto-day HR work to make sound decisions.

Daniel Kahneman’s five pragmatic mantras to improve workplace judgement

By Samriddhi Srivastava


A key determinant of success in business is making the right decision at the right time. At People Matters TechHR Singa pore this year, we proudly presented a conversation with Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman on how to avoid errors of judgement. Here, we bring you key takea ways from the event

22 | August 2022

23August 2022 | 2 1 Cethhr

Minimise risks with analytical judgement Flaws in judgement are not just restricted to hiring a new candi date for the job. Within an organ isation, when it comes to perfor mance reviews, biases have a huge impact. It can lead to the inflation or deflation of employee ratings, which can have serious implications, further affecting performance assessments such as promotion, compensation, hiring, or even firing decisions. To refrain from making such errors, Kahneman advised gath ering and considering information in length before making a big decision. He said, “You have a general impression of employees. When you have to make an unbiased decision, records and evidence can be very useful. Get in a habit of making notes about salient events. Then, during the final evaluation, go through those notes. You may discover that you have a very positive impression, but actually, there have been many problems with that individual.”

Standardise structured interviews

Business leaders are not immune to noise, the flaw in human judgement, and hence, they and the brand lose more than time, money and effort

The interview is a crucial stage of the hiring process which tells you about the candidates beyond their resumes. Among the two types of interviews; unstructured and structured, Professor Kahneman strongly recommends adopting a structured interview format to avoid inaccurate hiring decisions. The difference between struc tured and unstructured inter views lies in questions. While the structured format comprises predetermined questions, unstructured ones are sponta neous and the next questions emerge from the answers to the prior questions. Hence, it is unor ganised, leading to asking unnec essary questions, being biased and making imprecise recruit ments.“Structured interviews are planned and are designed to cover certain topics and address specific segments about the candi date. You can include open and close-ended questions to get an insight into the candidate’s knowledge, skills, abilities, and other attributes. However, don’t do this without intuition, just delay that instinct within an interview or delay it in general to eliminate bias,” he explained.

“People need intuition, as it gives you the sense that you understand the situation, further making you a confident leader. However, if achieved too early, confidence can be dangerous, because it’s an indication that you’re no longer collecting infor mation. That’s the problem with In the end, try to draw conclusions based on objective facts and not intuition

24 | August 2022 34 Cethhr

collect information,” said Kahne man. Be confident, not overconfident The Nobel Prize laureate believes strongly that confidence is good, but overconfidence is danger ous. It all starts with intuition, followed by the lack of feedback. As you keep making intuitive judgements without any assess ment, you become overconfi dent in your choices as a leader. That’s why Professor Kahne man suggested always going for a subjective sense of expertise.

Navigate noise to foster a positive workplace Professor Kahneman describes noise as an "undesirable variabil ity in judgments", something that pushes humans to make decisions that prove to be life-changing, without putting the necessary thought into it. Business leaders are not immune to noise, the flaw in human judgement, and hence, they and the brand lose more than time, money and effort by making bad“Thehires.price that companies pay when noise is involved in hiring is bringing in people who perhaps shouldn't have been brought on in the first place. That’s why lead ers mustn’t rely on intuitions, such as whether they're liked by their superior or whether they have support. The key is to focus on the facts, not feelings and give the situation considerable time so that you have adequate stretch to

With different people looking at the same case, you’ll realise how people see one situation in different ways. The point is to “acknowledge variability as it can be very useful in making sound judgments


25August 2022 |

intuition.”“Ontheother hand, intuition with all its flaws, is necessary, but with the help of feedback. If leaders are not getting feedback, they develop a subjective sense of expertise. They think they’re getting better at understanding and judgement, but you’re not. With passing time, when you don’t get feedback, you start agreeing with yourself and when you do that, it makes you overconfident."


Rethink techniquesdecision-making

Effective decision-making in today’s complex and disrupted business environments can be achieved by being analytical. To accomplish the same, Professor Kahneman shared three attributes: A. Measurement of noise Measure noise, study, and ask questions. “In hiring candidates, it’s crucial to know if different people reached the same conclu sions or not. You can assess this by systematic studies, in which different people interview the same candidate or by making people see the same film of the interview. Then analyse if differ ent individuals have distinct opin ions. That’s how you will find out there is more noise than you thought there was,” said Kahne man. B. Reduction of noise Once you know there is noise involved in the process, the next step is to reduce it. “For noise reduction, case conferences are very important. People influence each other very quickly. As a leader, you must minimise those influences with the help of strate gic independent discussions,” he added. C. Intelligent discussion With different people looking at the same case, you’ll real ise how people see one situation in different ways. The point is to “acknowledge variability as it can be very useful in making sound judgments. Thereafter, encourage people to ask questions so that every individual can share their point of view. In the end, try to draw conclusions based on objective facts and not intuition,” concluded the pioneer of behav ioural economics.

26 | August 2022 Cethhr

ach one of us dreams of building a business of our own some day but there is none like Nand Kishore Chaudhary, MD and Chairman of Jaipur Rugs, who is also known as the ‘Gandhi of the carpet indus try’. And rightfully so! In his entire journey, he was shunned by society, threatened, lost and in dire straits but he never let go of his belief to let goodness, fair ness and most importantly, love prevail in his business. Even as a student when he was asked to define business, his reply was, ‘It is next to love.’


At People Matters TechHR India conference in August, Chaudhary in his keynote

At TechHR India this year, we were honoured to have the ‘Gandhi of the carpet industry’, Nand Kishore Chaudhary, to share the story of Jaipur Rugs with us: “a business that sells blessings, stories and experiences; carpets are just a bonus.” We bring you his tale, from the event

By Ramya Palisetty

The story of Jaipur Rugs, a business "built by love", in the words of Nand Kishore Chaudhary

session, ‘Age Of The Modern Leaders’, took us along on his own journey at the University of Hard Rocks of Life, where his true education began 44 years ago.At a time when everyone was looking for a stable job to sustain themselves, he declined a wellrounded government job to find his passion and built a business that connected the poorest of the poor to the richest of the rich. It wasn’t an easy journey, he had to go against all odds and bet on his values and principles as he conquered one obstacle after another to build Jaipur Rugs, a business that combines kindness with the pursuit of profits in a manner that is beneficial to allartisans, stakeholders, consum ers, employees, suppliers and buyers.Wedive deeper into the life of Chaudhary and what makes his business model so popular among authors like CK Prahalad and Raj Sisodia, among others.

Standing up for the people who were refused a place in society: First hurdle When he began his journey as a contractor to learn the carpet business, his major work revolved around weavers, who, at that time, were shunned by the soci ety on the basis of caste. Due to his involvement with weavers, his family members were upset and even threatened to never let him pursue the business. Not just family, his neighbours were against the idea of him invit ing weavers into his home and at gatherings, people would often refuse to shake hands with him. Through these instances, Chaud hary understood how a person

27August 2022 | Cethhr

Channelling your passion into business: The beginning As a young adult, Chaudhary started his career at his father’s store, where he sold footwear. During his tenure there, he realised that there wasn’t much scope for growth and left. As he wondered about the true purpose of life and who he is, he came to the conclusion that he is indeed a people person, who loved spend ing time outdoors. As he tried to come up with a business idea aligned to these criteria, he found that there was a high demand in export for carpets made in India. He thought to himself, ‘This is what I should be doing as I will get a chance to work with people, who are shunned by society.’ With the decision made, he took a loan of 5,000 rupees from his father to buy an old cycle to travel to the weavers’ houses along with two weaving looms in Churu, a city in Rajasthan.

In 1999, Chaudhary separated his business from his brother and established what we today know as Jaipur Rugs. With challenges at every turn, all that he had earned was lost in the first three years of the business. There came a time

Most of Chaudhary’s adult life was spent travelling to villages as he worked with weavers. But now, he was on the precipice of running a global business and in order to do so, he had to equip himself with the right skillset. He began to read books, attended conferences, interacted with successful leaders and entrepre neurs to create a unique leader ship style and perception to help him in the long-run. His chil dren, who had completed their education from the US, came back to India to join the business and in no time, it grew like wild fire.But sustaining that growth came with its own set of chal lenges. Chaudhary understood that there was a need to hire people with immense business acumen. And when he started

Learn to unlearn: Third hurdle

28 | August 2022 Cethhr can be identified solely based on his caste and not his karma. It opened his eyes to the hypocrisy in society and in families. But nothing deterred him from his path, and the love he had for weavers triumphed over everything else. He would often spend all his time with them and even share meals. After over a decade, he came to Jaipur to build an export company with his brother. During that period, with a sudden rise in the demand for Indian carpets, he had to look for more weavers to meet the demand. He travelled to districts such as Valsad and Dang in Guja rat, known for carpet weav ing. Though there were several when he felt like he couldn’t continue the business anymore. And that’s when he decided to carry out deep introspection to find out where he went wrong. After navigating through his past, he realised that fame had gotten into his head, and he was experiencing a misleading sense of ‘Euphoria’. And since he was working with weavers for years on end, he had developed a false belief in his own goodness. His constant micromanaging of every decision made him rigid in his ways like a cube of ice. As he came to his senses, he decided to break away from the mould of ice and learn to flow like water again.

When he was asked to define business, his reply was, ‘It is next to love’ misconceptions around tribals there, Chaudhary knew that with love and empathy in his heart, he would find his way. And indeed he did! After three years, the tribes and their families would welcome him with open arms, as he became their guide and mentor. He lived with them for almost eight years where he taught over 15,000 weav ers how to weave a carpet.

Begin again: Second hurdle

In order to help his employ ees not suffer the same fate and understand the intricacies of carpet weaving, he started an initiative, the 'High School of Unlearning’, where every employee was introduced to the weavers who explained the entire step-by-step process of carpet weaving in detail. For his weav ers to gain knowledge about the business aspect of things, he started a management course where they could find the meaning and purpose of life. All this so he could align the value of Jaipur Rugs with its people! The dream come true In 2008, one of the most wellknown authors of India, CK Prahalad called Chaudhary to ask if he could write a case study on the Jaipur Rugs business model (The Fortune At The Bottom of The Pyramid) that revolved around enhancing capabilities at the grassroots level. It was during a chat with Prahalad that Chaud hary realised that he had built something valuable. At Jaipur Rugs, all the processes of carpet weaving have been put in place by weavers, who didn’t have any or much educa tion and Chaudhary believes that when it comes to creativity, educa tion doesn’t play an integral role. As he saw how talented some of his weavers were, he started the Manchaha project, to give them the freedom to design carpets to their liking with dignity, an initiative that has won nine global awards to Throughoutdate.his arduous jour ney, his biggest takeaway has been that it is true that technol ogy has brought about a change in the business landscape. But he believes that it can never replace the empathy or creativ ity possessed by a human being. If a business has these two ingre dients at its core, technology will only take it to great heights. The social entrepreneur built his busi ness on empathy, simplicity, integ rity, shared wisdom and humility since the beginning and that is the legacy that the world will follow. Knowledge is power but without practice, it develops into ego. One can lose themselves in knowledge without having a grip on reality

29August 2022 | Cethhr to do so, he was put in his place. That taught him an important lesson for life: Knowledge is power but without practice, it develops into ego. One can lose themselves in knowledge without having a grip on reality.

30 | August 2022

Executive Presence and how HR leaders can master it


By Mamta Sharma Business stakeholders are constantly judging and forming opinions based on HR stereotypes. In other words, they’re creating your reputation!Ithasbecome necessary for HR leaders today to rise to the chal lenge and further strengthen their role beyond the decisionmaking process to managing rela tionships and increasingly influ encing the management. And for this to happen, HR leaders have to stand out as trailblazers, change agents, and leaders who create the“ why HR leaders need to mindfully work on develop ing their executive presence and increase their personal influence. It is this combination that

How can HR leaders increase their personal influence to help them get noticed and bring about positive change? One solution is to mindfully work on developing their executive presence.

The key components of executive presence for HR leaders

The influence of HR function with management and top lead ership is rising. An efficient HR leader goes well beyond good communication and organising skills. Executive presence helps talented HR leaders to have mean ingful influence with the top ranks.Vikram says to achieve this influence with ease, HR leaders have to use all the nine key components or characteristics of executive presence - Rela tionship Mindset, Social Aware ness, Personal Magnetism, Inner Dialogue, Composure, Personal Brand, Gratitude, Self-Care, and Compassion.

While leadership is the ability to influence, helpspresenceexecutiveiswhatyouinfluencewithease will help them get noticed and bring about positive change. Also , when HR leaders leverage their executive presence they are signalling their readiness for the next level,” says Vikram, execu tive, leadership and career development coach at Coach Vikram which offers specialised coach ing around CXO advisory, partner promotion, executive transition, startup founders and CEO coach ing among others. What is executive presence? Vikram defines executive pres ence as the balance of the behaviours of focus, power, and warmth. These behaviours can be learned and can be switched on and off by choice to bring out your best self and influence people.

31August 2022 |

Leadership and executive presence - the crucial difference While leadership is the ability to influence, executive presence is what helps you influence with ease.“In fact, leaders already emanate leadership qualities. Their presence enables them to expand their spheres of influence, accelerate business results, and stand out,” says Vikram, who has worked with organisations like Aditya Birla Group, Asian Paints, Avendus, Bank Of America, BCG, Capgemini, DBS, DE Shaw, Google, HDFC Life, J.P.Morgan, KPMG, McKinsey, Lightspeed India Partners, Nomura, PwC and VISA among others.


smartest person in the room. Common barriers leaders face when influencing – and solutions to setting the right tone

It’s all right if you are not the

• They are uncomfortable with vulnerability.

• They are not comfortable making a powerful impression.


2. Gather a lot of information on matters related to your field. A broader knowledge base and expertise will help you display more authority and gravitas and your stakeholders will start taking you more seriously.

Vikram lists a series common leadership barriers that dilute a leader's presence and influence:

• They surround themselves with people who do not inspire.

• Engage in conversations that might be a little too focused on themselves, their work, and their experiences.

3. Make time for yourself and open up about your vulnerabili ties so that you can build trust.

• They have a limited view of HR influence on the organisation.

32 | August 2022 “As an HR leader, when they balance all these nine compo nents they communicate with likeability, credibility, and trust,” he adds. Augmenting executive presence for HR leaders in their everyday work Vikram suggests three actions steps HR leaders can put into practice immediately to work on their executive presence:

• Every meeting with them is like a conversation.transaction-driven

• They often carry emotions from their previous meetings to the next.

• They don’t step into power and dream big or play big.

1. Go out and know more people in your organisation. Engag ing in not just transactional HR conversations but also mean ingful conversations that build relationships.

• They do not give people the benefit of the doubt easily. So what are the solutions to these?Firstly, leaders should have clarity about meeting outcomes. At the same time, they must make an effort to connect with people through common topics even beyondBeforework.their next meeting, they should take some time to prepare and freshen themselves. Having that extra energy will help them to be more socially aware and navigate the dynamics in the room during their next meeting. In the meeting itself, they

33August 2022 |


Deserving a seat at the table and building value in a discussion is mindseta should be mindful to speak and express ideas succinctly, so as to come across as composed and credible. This increased confi dence and clarity, will inspire greater support from stakehold ers.When talking to others, lead ers should mindfully shift the spotlight to the other person and let them share while the leader listens. They should create posi tive momentum and rapport to see early wins. The company one keeps is crit ical. Leaders should surround themselves with people who are better than them. They need to recognise their own weaknesses, so that they can have people in their team who will complement their strengths. And they need to be positive – to start looking for what is working out rather than what is not working out, so as to better appreciate the support of those around them.

• Spend time building effective external alliances. Make time to expand your professional and personal networks outside of your organisation.

• Build strong networks with your senior leaders to build effective partnerships across the organisation. Make a list of your top five key sponsors and have monthly or quarterly touch points with them.

• Purposefully design your digi tal footprint to stand out. For a start, leverage social media to connect with leaders from other organisations.

HR leaders need to allow them selves to dream big and play the game joyfully. Deserving a seat at the table and building value in a discussion is a mindset! Developing and sustaining a powerful personal brand Branding helps leaders with increased leadership visibility and brand recall. “And expanding your spheres of visibility and recall, helps you to gain credibility and inspire action. This then results in you influencing with ease for greater success,” says Vikram, suggesting some easy ways one can sustain a personal brand and put them selves in a position to win:

• Set aside time to work on new skills. You may want to use this time to work on developing your subject matter expertise.

storyoverC 34 | August 2022

With all this said, it's still hard to tell how much of a change will come to pass in the long term. Even as progressive organisations embraced the leap forward that resulted from the pandemic, just as many have been looking forward to going back to prepandemic ways. Two and a half years simply may not have been long enough to shift mindsets, expectations, and ways of working.

As work and the workplace continues to evolve, we must constantly look ahead for the challenges and opportunities of the future

This month, our cover story brings forward perspectives and reactions to some of the changes in the world of work: today's trends and what outcome they may lead to, how organisations are moving forward and where they see themselves in five, ten, twenty years' time. Ultimately, the future of work is shaped by what employers do today.

And around all of these, regulation and legislation are evolving: indus try bodies, national governments, and international governance bodies are slowly but surely developing frameworks to direct and shape how organi sations interact with employees in the new world of work.

It's the perpetual question: what lies ahead of us? And it has been all the more relevant to the world of work in recent years, as digitalisation, the pandemic, changing employee expec tations, and economic uncertainty combine to open up more and more questions about how organisations should operate. Here are just a few: On one end of the spectrum, there are changes in the physical office as employers overhaul their layouts for greater flexibility in the hybrid model – building in areas specifically designed for physical collaboration, adding the capacity for virtual meet ings, and so on. Some have shifted from a single centralised office to multiple small satellites more accessi ble to a distributed workforce; others have embraced remote working to the extent of completely eliminating office space. What might the next setup look like?Alongside the flexible work trend are technological developments, with digitalisation first driving huge changes in processes and then slowing as organisations settled into consoli dation mode. Automation, workflow tools, and virtual collaboration tools have already entrenched themselves, and some, more advanced organisations are looking into the possibilities of next-generation technologies such as the Withmetaverse.orwithout technology, processes and working arrangements have had to change. Leadership styles are evolving and leaders are called upon to demonstrate competencies –such as empathy, communication, agility – which might have been a lower priority before. The way teams are managed has shifted greatly, away from the old belief in command and control and to a more collaborative, people-centric approach, requiring managers to reskill and upskill. The war for talent has pushed organisations to offer a greater degree of flex ibility in working times, locations, and even part-time arrangements.

35August 2022 |


Why leadership needs upskilling for climate change

36 | August 2022

For all organisations, no matter what sector they operate in, sustainabil ity and environmental, social and governance (ESG) is no longer a ‘nice to have’, and nor is it enough to just address ESG issues from a siloed team within.Stephen Bovis, vice presi dent and managing director, South Pacific, Hewlett Pack ard Enterprise (HPE) says if the world is going to make the necessary carbon reductions to meet net zero goals, it will need employees from across company divisions and sectors working towards sustainability outcomes.Thewar for ESG talent is tough, he points out, and organ isations need to look for every opportunity to attract and upskill strong “Organisationstalent.need to upskill talent across their entire businesses to integrate ESG into the overall strate gies. HPE’s approach isn’t to build out a huge centralised ESG team but rather to build capabilities – whether that’s in product development or finance,” he says. To equip leaders from

Sustainability cannot be separated from the future of work, and boards are acutely aware of this. ESG factors now rank as ‘very important’ to the enterprise value of a company in addition to being a force for good in the world. Stephen Bovis, Managing Director South Pacific at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, explains why Mamta Sharma


37August 2022 | storyoverC across all HPE’s teams and empower them to confi dently create action plans within their organisations that mitigate climate impacts, HPE will be intro ducing a mandatory climate training programme for all leaders at VP level and above. The programme will inform and inspire HPE executives to learn about the relevance of climate change to HPE’s business. Also, beginning in 2022, executive committee bonus compensation will be tied to the company’s performance against key climate metrics. “This builds on existing ESG-related compensation metrics related to team member engagement and workforce diversity,” says Bovis.HPE has the Young Employee Network (YEN) programme - an inter national group of rising talents who are given the opportunity to connect with colleagues and business leaders, strengthen team building and expand their knowledge to develop a new generation of leaders. YEN employees can also partici pate in mentoring and work shops to enrich their experi ence of work and upskill on climate change at a corpo rate level. Upskilling, reskilling senior leadership to help mitigate climate change Achieving net-zero targets requires transformation and accountability across every part of the business. “Climate change is an existential threat to humanity and our planet. Goals don’t drive change, account ability and action do, and this starts at the top,” says Bovis.Inaddition to HPE’s exec utive climate training, the entire board completed ESG training in 2021 to enhance their competence. “It’s important that ESG is managed at the board given that it’s inextricably linked to HPE’s business strategy,” says“Board-levelBovis. attention around corporate sustain ability is hitting all-time highs with ESG factors now ranked as ‘very important’ to the enterprise value of a company – in addition to being a force for good in the world,” Bovis adds.

And as per IDC’s latest predictions, by 2023, 75% of enterprises will expect sustainability goals to be addressed in RFI responses, demonstrating responsi ble supply chain principles and secure IT asset disposi tion capabilities, Bovis says aligning tech strategies with sustainability initiatives, organisations across indus tries are growing stronger, more resilient, and more able to accelerate a data-first digital“ that compa-

HPE’s approach isn’t to build out a huge centralised ESG team but rather to build capabilities – whether that’s in product development or finance

Climate change is an existential threat to humanity and our planet. Goals don’t drive change, accountability and action do, and this starts at the top

38 | August 2022 storyoverC

Winning the war for ESG talent Bovis says now is the time for organisations to ensure sustainability is a key part of their business strategies and incorporate ESG as a workforce strategy - given changing mindsets, espe cially among the younger workforce.Eveninthe midst of a pandemic, climate change stood out as Australian Millennials’ (33%) and Gen Z’s (33 %) primary concern in the workforce, as per Deloitte’s 2021 Millennial and Gen Z Survey.

nies linking digital and sustainable transformation are 2.5 times more likely to be among tiveScience-basedapprovedniesamongby2050isity“netusageemissions,aggressivelyworldwidenesses,”strongest-performingtomorrow’sbusiheadds.Therefore,businessesarepledgingtocutcarbonreduceenergyandstrivetoachievezero”sustainabilgoals.Onitsown,HPEacceleratingitsexistingnet-zerocommitment10yearsto2040.HPEisthefirsttechcompawithanetzerotargetbytheglobalTargetInitia(SBTi).Sustainabilityisinextrica

“Not only are our custom ers asking us to help them reduce the climate/environ mental impacts of their IT estates, but also – a major portion of carbon emis sion occurs during the use phase of our product lifecycle. Helping our custom ers optimise their IT’s effi ciency by transforming and modernising sustainability is our biggest opportunity to have a positive impact on the planet,” he adds.

“HPE has a decentral ised approach to ESG that enables us to have a lean team of ESG experts that act as internal consultants across the business to help enable the brightest minds to solve the issues they encounter every day (e.g., helping product engineers design with ethics consid erations, helping finance teams evaluate climate risk, etc),” he adds.

bly linked to HPE’s business strategy, says Bovis.

39August 2022 | storyoverC

The role of HR has undergone a paradigm shift to integrate with core business. HR leaders now have a major part to play in shaping the future of work, and they must partner with CEOs or business leaders to do that. We hear from Kristin Trecker, CHRO of Visteon Corporation Mamta Sharma While the key requirement for any HR leader is to build and retain talent, a majority of HR leaders are still fo cused on policies and pro cesses instead of initiating innovative practices to drive the change. But that won't help us build the future of work.Kristin Trecker, Chief Human Resources Officer of global technology leader in automotive electronics Visteon Corporation, says there’s an urgent need to re think the role of HR within the“Theorganisation.roleofHR has undergone a sea change in the past several years driven by the increased criticality of talent in executing the business strategy. The ex pectation today is that HR is boundaryless and deeply integrated with the core business,” she says. In an

'Role Revision': HR leaders need to be stewards of company culture

withroleleadersinsightsTreckerPeopleinteractionexclusivewithMatters,sharedonhowHRcanplayainpartneringCEOsorbusiness lead ers and building a culture that has a one-team mindset and is aligned by a common vision. There seems to be an urgent need to build HR capability including awareness about data, technology, marketing, P&L, and finan cials for post-pandemic success. How can this be achieved? The HR teams need to have multi-functional under standing and experience to create a meaningful impact. This includes commercial, financial, customer and market awareness and the ability to leverage data and technology to provide better insights and strategies. I always tell my team that we are value creators—for our people, customers, and investors. For this, we need a 360-degree overview of the company and business. We need to think about adding both top- and bottom-line value.AtVisteon, we work close ly with business leaders to develop our strategic pri orities and assess the capabilities required to achieve these. We collaborate with the leadership team to identify the talent require ments needed to support our technology and customer roadmap.

40 | August 2022 storyoverC

Finally, building a team with diverse experiences and expertise is also a way to build the whole team’s capability. My team includes people who also have sales, marketing, and backgrounds—andfinancialthisincludesme.Thisbringsinnewperspectiveswhilesimultaneouslybuildingorganisationalcapabilitiesintheseareas.

As HR leaders, we are stewards, with the CEO and the executive team, of the cul ture. We create the organisational framework and archi tecture that enables people to unleash their individual and collective abilities. We have fostered a highly collaborative environment ensuring that everyone in the company understands the vision. This message is cascad ed through our regional and functional leaders as well. This enables people to better understand where we are go ing and what we stand for. In turn, our employees un derstand the impact they are creating in their roles, which strengthens their connection with the company. How is Visteon reshap ing the workplace culture to focus on employees and their professional development? People engagement is always one of our priorities. Post-pandemic, it is even more important to re-eval uate our thinking around this. We are deploying lis tening strategies to better understand how we can increase employee engage ment and effectiveness. For example, we recently adopted a hybrid work model. Because of our listening efforts, we were able to structure this to be more responsive to employees’ needs and find the right bal ance between business ob jectives and helping people work more effectively and grow in their careers. We are also focused on building a healthy culture and creating the right envi ronment for people to learn, grow and succeed. This includes: Living our beliefs and values so they are more than words on a piece of paper. Our beliefs are values are: • We obsess over deliver ing exceptional customer satisfaction • We treat each other with respect and embrace our differences

Visteon’s Beliefs and Values form a “North Star” to guide us in our work. They build on our past strengths but are forward-looking to assure that we hold ourselves to the highest standards in every step we take, every single day. Incorporating nimble ness. The industry is un dergoing obstacles.portunities.andandfreedomspirit.andingthisofnessingtransformationonce-in-a-centuryandiswitanexponentialratechange.Torespondtochange,wearebuildteamsthatarenimblehaveanentrepreneurialAtVisteon,peoplehavethetoexploretrendsconsumerbehaviours,senseandseizenewopTherewillbeHowever,weare

• We use our passion for innovation to keep our cus tomers ahead of the curve • We uplift the communities in which we operate and protect our environment at every turn Emphasising the importance of both the “what” and “how” of work. We are becoming a software-driven company with technology solutions that allow us to play an important role in our customers’ transition to digital cockpits, electrification and the connected car. But just as important as what we do is how we do it. Our values remain at the forefront as we embrace this rapid pace of change.

How can HR leaders play a role in building a culture with a one-team mindset and common vision?

As HR leaders, we are stewards, with the CEO and the executive team, of the culture

Launching an early ca reer programme. To build capability within our or ganisation, we are focusing on bringing in recent college graduates through the RISE programme, which is an early career programme at Visteon. It allows us to find talented newcomers with deep capabilities, train them and help them grow in the mobility industry.We're also looking across the industry to find innovative leaders who under stand technology in the mobility space and can aug ment our capabilities with new skills and talent. Technology is changing fast, and we need to be very diligent about observing the market trends What is your talent strategy to stay future-ready amid disruptive trends in the mobility space? Technology is changing fast, and we need to be very diligent about observing the market trends. Here are a few things that we are in corporating into our talent strategy: Developing a talent roadmap. We collaborate with our customers so we can enable them to be suc cessful in the marketplace. We create a connection

individual's core competen cies linked to the company's product portfolio. Visteon's Technical Ladder gives its experts a platform to pro mote their work in creating new methods of product development and innovative manufacturing processes across a variety of different disciplines.Wearealso recognising employees by offering a di rect stake in the company’s performance via stock options. This enables sharing ownership and profits with a broad base.

41August 2022 | storyoverC

between customers, their roadmap, technology inno vations, industry demands, and our talent. Every six months, we review these roadmaps by analysing the needs and plans of our customers and developing an integrated talent devel opment plan. Developing our work force planning capabilities. Our workforce plan ning model allows us to look at the capabilities that we have today, the capabili ties we might need in the future, and identify the gap. This allows us to better ensure that we have the right skills at the right time at the right place. It also allows us to make smart investment decisions when we know additional capa bilities are needed.

confident that our team can overcome these so that we can better serve our custom ers with industry-leading digital products. Adopting a growth mindset. We encourage people to step outside their comfort zone, explore new things and adopt a growth mindset. We have also ear marked a day each year to intentionally focus on a growth mindset. On this day, we ask people across levels to talk about their achieve ments and initiate a dialogue on how embracing a growth mindset helps. Providing career development opportunities through career mobility and recognition. Our goal is to increase our ability to source talent from within. We have a well-laid-out internal movement plan and pro cess to place people into new, challenging roles that help them grow their capabilities. This has led to atesprogramme,Visteon’sprovingthroughwhotalentrecognisesersdifference.whoextraordinarytioncross-functionalincreasedcollaboraandmorecohesion.WearealsorecognisingperformersreallystrivetomakeaOurFutureMakprogramme,forexample,keytechnicalacrossallfunctionsshapeVisteon’sfutureinnovationorbyim-thewaysweoperate.AnotherexampleisTechnicalLadderwhichaccelerthedevelopmentofthe

One of the most

Technology, automation, and the metaverse will build new careers

By Sudeshna Mitra


42 | August 2022 storyoverC

The present age has brought chaotic dis ruption to many busi nesses. The challenges of today include talent shortage, efficient retention, well ness and several others, all of which come together and give a new structure to the future of work. To understand how the future of work may appear, People Matters spoke with Sharad Mehra, CEO (APAC) of higher education network Global University Systems. Here's what he told us dur ing the interaction. How do you define ‘the future of work’? Disruptive automation – which combines techni cal and human expertise – alongside a host of nextreality skills and an innova tive approach will be setting the tone for the future of work across the globe. With the metaverse unfolding at high speed around us, we can expect working styles, organisational operations, businesses, skill sets, do main expertise to undergo huge transformations and create ‘next level’ interac tions where connections will matter in a big way. And in this increasingly autono mous ecosystem, it will be important for everyone to be a ‘forever learner’ where upskilling will be a norm.

Simultaneously, the 4Cs –Culture, Collaboration, Communication and Connectiv ity – will continue to drive the work scenario ahead. Another important devel opment will be new careers that didn’t exist five years ago or even now. These will see an escalation on the

The future of work will be shaped by disruptive automation. In conversation with People Matters, Sharad Mehra, CEO (APAC) of Global University Systems, describes how this blends technological and human expertise with a variety of next-generation skills and an innovative mindset

43August 2022 | storyoverC Before anything else, organisations have to remember that all changes should centre around the human element employment front. In fact, a recent World Economic Forum report projects that by 2025, 97 million new roles may emerge that are more adapted to the new division of labour between humans, machines, and algorithms. The resulting changes in talent acquisition processes will continue to disrupt the playing field and hybrid working styles will become a norm. For example, we made work from home two days a week, a permanent feature at GUS. We can also expect companies and organisations to become less hierar chical and more aligned to working on projects, consul tancies and other similar models. In an article, Forbes stated, “It’s been predicted that 85% of the jobs that will be available in 2030 don’t yet exist!” How do you look at this? Yes, that’s a reality. With increasing progress in technology, automation and the shift towards metaverse, one of the most impactful chang es will be the rise of careers that don’t exist today. For ex ample, in the metaverse eco system we can expect new roles like: Metaverse Business Strategist, Meta Event Direct, Metaverse Research Scientist, AR VR Designer, Crypto Artist and others. The future of jobs will also hinge upon the following factors: Workplace Skills – Abil ity to work in a team that you have not seen; playing a team game without know ing the team is pivotal to the workplace. New-Reality Skills – Ne gotiation kindness, grati tude, mindfulness besides domain expertise. Cognitive Skills – Crea tivity, originality, reasoning, critical and analytical think ing and complex problem solving. Being up-to-speed with technology – The VUCA world will continue to expand with technological shifts easing challenges. When we reimagine the job landscape, we also have to be prepared that the careers of the future will be more fluid, cross-disci plinary, requiring multiple experiences and multi-func tional. In my opinion, we can expect the expansion of gig roles, reskilling and reboot ing backed by technological skills. While such predictions are being made, do you think that the skills being imparted to the present workforce will be useful by 2030? The four skills mentioned above are already setting the base for the future and I’d like to classify them as ‘Evergreen Skills’ that can outshine any challenge or change. What’s important

44 | August 2022 storyoverC

What’s important to remember is that since we are seeing huge technological strides in the form of Edge Computing, 5G, Metaverse and other similar tech shifts, we will have to be prepared to have a constant upgrade, upskill and learn new things to stay relevant and in sync with the changes that unfold around us.

To what extent do you think process automation is going to affect the future workforce? Robotic Process Automa tion (RPA) and emerging technology is an exciting part of what is to arrive in theBesidesfuture.moulding talent development by creating learning strategies, it will help sharpen critical thinking, emotional intelligence, reasoning skills and more. RPA will reshape the work force by sharpening em ployee engagement, increase productivity and further raise quality standards by opening doors for employees to add value to existing processes by improving their quality, approach and also catalyse innovation.

to remember is that since we are seeing huge techno logical strides in the form of Edge Computing, 5G, Metaverse and other similar tech shifts, we will have to be prepared to have a con stant upgrade, upskill and learn new things to stay relevant and in sync with the changes that unfold around us. A survey conducted by PWC revealed that only 26% of respondents strongly agreed they can identify the skills the organisation will need in the future due to technological change. How, according to you, should organisations look at this to shape their L&D programs going forward? Change is an inevitable part of Beforelife.anything else, organisations have to re member that all changes should centre around the human element. That’s why we’ve witnessed an escalation of in-house programs and conversations on men tal well-being, workplace improvement, inclusivity and diversity, incorporation of technical learning among other changes. Like the current trend, upskill ing will not be limited to just domain expertise but will also include other softer and important skills like devel oping more collaborations, building bonds, networking and looking at a positive and impactful change in not just in professional but personal life as well. So, in the future, companies have to be mind ful of ensuring that people matter to themselves and their organisations via all these trainings and other programmes.

How will the disruption of today affect the future of work? To answer that question, we have to first accept that we are being disrupted and there is no alternative but to live and work with that disruption. Indraneel Kumar Das, Head of L&D at Byjus Tuition Centre, talks about how he came to this conclusion By Sudeshna Mitra Culture has emerged as one of the highly prioritised factors among job seekers globally. A recent study conducted by Randstad has found that as many as 41% of Singaporeans would rather be unem ployed than feel unhappy in a job and more than half (52%) would quit if their jobs prevented them from enjoying life. This finding, and others like it from around the world, clearly depict that going forward into the future of work, leaders will need to be extra cautious about offering the right kind of culture to retain the key talent into the workforce, and efforts have to be made by both internal and external stakeholders to succeed in doing so. To discuss how such factors are going to affect the investments and plan nings of the future of work, People Matters chatted with Indraneel Kumar Das, Head of L&D at Byjus Tuition Centre. Here are some excerpts from the conversa tion. A recent study conducted by Deloitte states that 80% of the respondents believe it is important for external workers to participate in the organisation’s culture. But achieving this alignment is not easy. As you are associ ated with a company that works with external stakeholders and workers to a great extent, how do you look at this statement? At the heart of that study is confronting the challenges of intentionally leading and coordinating workforce ecosystems OR orchestrat ing workforce ecosystems. In a world changing from VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous) to BANI (Brittle, Anxious, Nonlinear, Incomprehensible) in less than 2 years’ time with a 30-50% contingent work

'We are all living in the age of chaos'

45August 2022 | storyoverC

• Create and align to a purpose driven culture – define and drive a common ‘Why’ amongst one and all.

• Be fluid and ready to embrace nimbleness and agility in every experi ence. Going forward, to what extent will it be possible for organisations to balance the needs of external and internal employees in the hybrid era of work where even internal employees don’t meet in person very often?

Here are some sugges tions:

• Build an instant hyperpersonalised feedback mechanism for everyone – make time for regular cadence on the same.

• Provide equal opportunity to everyone

• Recognise cross func tional wins – big or small, internal or external, gig or otherwise.

• Use core competencies of empathy, communication and inclusiveness to drive connectedness.

• Rethink empowerment in smaller flexible team set ups.

• Discover a powerful common individual and organisational purpose. In an article, Forbes stated, “It’s been predicted that 85% of the jobs that will be available in 2030 don’t yet exist!” Amid such a scenario, what do you think about the relevance of the skills being imparted to the present workforce? In my experience, I think we are only incrementally Are the needs of internal and external employees really that different? The context might be different, but human beings are social animals

The context might be differ ent, but human beings are social animals. You cannot take away that innate aspect of human nature even in the strictest cases of gig or remote work culture. Given this fact, some of the most basic indicative needs of any employee at work would be to learn, earn, and grow in a connected workplace. As HR professionals, we should consciously step up our efforts to create employee experiences which speak to these three needs.

• Re-align work and life to reduce digital burnouts.

• Find creative ways to collaborate.

• Embrace diverse voices and opinions to create the framework of common cultural tenets irrespective of location, geogra phy, mindset.

• Storytelling is a great tool to build culture competencies – use it to cascade culture. Intentionally, weave in the gig stories in your meetings.

In response to this, I will dig deeper and ask myself: are the needs of internal and external employ ees really that different?

force, we are all looking at a recipe for disaster if we do not have a strong cultural foundation in place. In that context, I would suggest that we not compartmentalise external and internal workers just by their location. Rather, can we develop a gig mindset in every employee and stake holder? Bear in mind that the first step of culture building is working on mindsets, beliefs, and behaviours. This gig mindset is a mind set of being a self-starter, taking ownership, accountability and initiative (agnos tic to role), innovating big and small, constantly fail ing and learning. By trying a distributed and network ing leadership model, we can empower and engage the external stakeholders and employees to participate in a thriving org culture.

46 | August 2022 storyoverC

Any organisation that offers challenging and meaningful work, ongoing learning, and a meritocratic workplace culture has already won the battle.Key elements of a thriving hybrid work culture can be:

• Am I leading with clarity and purpose?

• Am I creatively collaborat ing Havemore?Ifigured out all? No. Have these impacted my leadership style? Oh, yes!

culture of lifelong learn ing in your organisations, backed by an unheard-of rate of technology adoption. How do you plan to restructure your own leadership style to match such changes penetrating the workforce? I think the first step I took was accepting the fact that we are all living in the age of chaos. The next step was to acquire knowledge around understanding these chaotic patterns and the effect they will have on my work. My further steps were to find out the answers to these questions and embed them in my leadership quotient, in no particular order:

• What changes do I need to make amidst increased digitalisation and new age teams?

• What am I doing to keep my team agile and future ready?

• Am I building resilience in the team? How am I ensuring my new work force is not fragile?

• Do I know the values and motivations of my team members across genera tions?

• Am I leading with trust, empathy, and mindfulness ,or with control?

47August 2022 | storyoverC innovating in this space. We need to get more aggres sive on skill inIreality,hencetheirlimitedskilltheavailable,andtunities,makeeffortsfutureandevelopmentupskillingtovidualsisnewreskillingofmatesWorldtofirstspendtheupskillingchanges.scaleimproveals,SoevolvethatBroadlyopmentorganisations’consultantsResearchers,development.academicians,andofcoursetalentdevelshouldpavetheway.speaking,weknowallthefutureskillswillwithtechinnovation.aslearningprofessionweneedtokeepupandthepaceoflarge-workforcecapabilitySkilling,reskillingandisthenameofgame.Unfortunately,wealotoftimeontheone.Weneedtopivotthenexttwo–fast.TheEconomicForumesti-that,by2025,50%allemployeeswillneedduetoadoptingtechnology.Industry4.0here,already.Bothindiandcompaniesneedcommittoreskillingandandmakecareerbasistheseessentialelementoftheworkforce.Greatshouldbetakentotheselearningoppor-suchasreskillingupskilling,accessible,andaffordabletolargeworkforce.Currentbuildingislargelytohelpemployeesdocurrentjobsbetter,anditismyopic.So,amidstallthisharshwhatcanwedo?Ifmustdefinethechangeonesentence–createa

• Do I have a ready pool of talent prepared to face black swan events, if and when?

• On my priority list, where does learning, re-learn ing and feature?re-orientation

• Am I creating leaders who can be self-drivenself-responsible,andconscious?

The sentiment is usually well-intentioned – many technology projects are deployed to make staff more produc tive, reduce time spent on more tedious tasks, and improve their overall work force experience. But how many leaders take the time to make sure that’s how it’s understood at the coal face? The answer is very few from myTheexperience.simplefact is, that we’re creatures of habit and we struggle with change.

48 | August 2022 storyoverC

Winning the war for talent by building serious digital muscle

The future of work is one where organisations need to become more digitally ready, in order to keep up with trends and meet the expectations of a global workforce that is already advancing ahead of where many businesses are prepared to go

By Jarrod McGrath

Organisations need to be willing to acknowledge the

The power balance has shifted between employers and employees as a more digitally talented workforce feels more empowered to take control of how, where and when they work. Busi ness and HR leaders need to acknowledge these trends and change their approach to technology and people if they’re to succeed in attracting and fulfilling the best talent in the country.

There are many reasons why people don’t quickly adapt to new things: comfort with the old ways, presumption that there will be difficult teeth ing issues that will make the change difficult, fear, or concern it will lead to a clash between the coal face and leadership. What does this innovation mean for my role? Is this the first step in a machine or an application taking over my role? Reports and headlines are full of ‘AI will steal your job’ sentiment – some of which is justified, and some just fearmongering. In any case, it’s created a very justifi able fear among the work force around new technol ogy being a steppings tone towards their irrelevance. Trust and transparency are key The tension between people and AI highlights the impor tance of trust and transpar ency for a modern digital workforce.AIisgoing to play a bigger role in the future of work, and it will see many roles disappear from the work force. But it will also create new and enhance existing roles. The Indian Govern ment expects AI to create 20 million jobs between now and 2025. Globally, the World Economic Forum estimates AI will create 97 million new jobs by 2025 while displacing 85 million. It’s a net positive, but there’s work to be done for more people to feel that.

Achieving this means a fresh look at technology, not just on the tools that are leveraged, but how to build them into an organisation and create a workforce built upon digital muscle. Tech works for us, not the other way around To date, most digital transfor mation has centred around the idea that people should change the way they operate to align themselves to the technology in which business and technology leaders have decided to invest.

49August 2022 | storyoverC

Jarrod McGrat H is the author of The Digital Workforce and CEO of human capital management consultancy Smart WFM.

About the Author (WFM) and payroll. I’ve worked closely with leading experts in the field of people management to test this and these are the criteria we’ve developed supported by our Maximum People Value framework: (see the below table) Leaders who take time to understand this, who are willing to align, prepare, track, implement and meas ure the success of their digi tal workforce, will ultimately win the war on talent, create the most diverse and inclu sive teams, build trust through transparency, and align the coal face to senior leadership to deliver both personal and business value for all stakeholders.

Creating the ‘Digital Muscle’ This fresh approach, which I firmly believe is neces sary for businesses in India to succeed and make the most of the opportunities an enhanced digital economy will provide, doesn’t just allay fears, it dramatically increases the value of a digi talTheworkforce.coalface is no longer ignored, it’s empowered –taking an active humancentred role in what tech nology is used and how. It’s aware of and communicat ing with senior leadership to evaluate, measure, and succeed. It converts digital transformation from a series of ongoing engagements to building ongoing skills and outcomes with digi tal muscle developing and powering the organisation, and its people and satisfying the needs of everyone in it.

Humanmanagementcapital People Strategy Talent planning and flexibleRecruitmentattributionandplacementOnboardingandcomplianceLearningandgrowthPerformanceoptimisationandworkpracticesCareerandsuccessionplanning WFM PeopleForecastingpaymentInterpretingOperationsrulesandrosteringTracktimeExceptionmanagementApprovalsPayperiodend Payroll People statutoryManageManagePayrollCompliancepolicypayrollcomponentsdatainputandvalidationPayrollprocessing,distributionandcompliancePayrollaccountingReportingandanalytics

There are ways to meas ure this too – a framework of steps to follow under the pillars of human capi tal management (HCM), workforce management

reality of AI’s impact on the workforce and take steps to ensure staff are informed, involved, and retrained so that it becomes a positive force in their career. This mindset shift allows us to take a step back and remember what technology is: a tool. It’s not something we have to align to, it’s a tool to work hand in hand with us to make our lives easier. Even when not related to the AI conversation, commu nication is often poor when it comes to people-focused digital transformation projects. While these projects are designed for entire work forces, the transaction usually only happens between knowledge workers and the operational coal face is out of the loop, no doubt adding to any concerns or fears they might already have. So, organisational and HR leaders need to open up these lines of communica tion, which should be a key aim of technology deploy ments in the first place. Given the workforce in India are already adept at digital read iness, this approach is even more likely to be welcomed and succeed here than in other parts of the world.

50 | August 2022 storyoverC

What's next for talent mobility?

The practice of moving talent across borders is back, now that the world is reopening. But things have changed, and a fresh set of challenges to talent mobility loom in the future of work

By Lee Quane

Manage agelarchallengesmacroeconomicthroughregu-compensationpack-reviews

While global travel contin ues to pick up around the world, it remains hard to say if we are truly on the path towards an economic recovery. Headlines in recent times have largely been dominated by warnings of rising inflation rates driven by supply chain imbalances, which have threatened to set the global financial market into a major recession. This has been corroborated by ECA International’s latest Cost of Living research, which saw a global year-onyear median rate of infla tion of 5.8%, up from 1% a year ago. This has driven up the cost of living for expa triates around the world, particularly across factors like rental costs, utilities, andTopetrol.combat this, compa nies can look to incorpo rate wage adjustments and policies aimed at mitigating the impact of inflation and exchange rate fluctuations, which would work to protect their employees’ purchasing power in the current eco nomic climate. This is par ticularly crucial at present, given how inflation rates in many countries are at levels that many have never expe rienced.

The world is transition ing to post-pandemic life, and both leisure and corporate travel are forecasted to make a steady recovery amid significant pent up demand. Similarly, in the realm of global tal ent mobility, international moves are likewise expected to gradually regain momen tum. Nevertheless, the ongo ing challenges posed by the pandemic have presented a new set of complications for talent mobility teams around the world. Markets across the world are experiencing the worst inflation in decades, prompt ing fears of an upcoming recession. Regional govern ments have begun to imple ment policies aimed at pri oritising local workforces, leaving the stability of some expatriate positions unset tled. At the same time, major shifts in employee priorities have presented new con siderations around talent retention, particularly for companies looking to kick start overseas assignments once again. In the face of these challenges, how then may em ployers better prepare them selves for the challenges of cross-border mobility and talent retention that will impact the future of work?

Support employeerenewedpriorities in an increasingly unpredictable world

While the physical health concerns posed by COVID-19 have undoubtedly taken Promote andstructureorganisationalanwhereforeigntalentcomplementsenhancesthelocalmanpower,ratherthancompeteswithit

While such measures are typically relaxed as economies return to health, companies looking to work around them in the meantime must look to balance their need for foreign talent with those of a recovering localOneworkforce.waytoachieve this is by promoting an organi sational structure where foreign talent complements and enhances the local man power, rather than competes with it. For instance, foreign workers can play a role in companies’ talent devel opment programmes by training local employees on skills and knowledge which may be lacking. Knowledge sharing also creates oppor tunities for willworkingneouslytheemployeecollaboration,cross-culturalheighteningproductivityinlongrun,whilesimultapromotinghealthyrelationshipsthatultimatelybenefitthe company’s morale and cul ture.

51August 2022 | storyoverC

The pandemic has changed the relationship that many of us have with our work. Employees today have begun to prioritise factors such as their health, well-being, and time with family above con ventional job benefits, and this is no different for expatriates. On the contrary, to help alleviate the additional stress that can arise from being in a foreign environ ment, employers should look to revisit their benefit plans and recalibrate their over seas operations in a manner that can best support their expatriate employees in to day’s unpredictable world.

As inflation and exchange rate movements can directly impact both the real and perceived value of compensa tion packages for staff work ing outside of their home countries, companies should set in place clear and consistent policies that allow for fair and timely reviews of their staff’s compensation packages as needed, which will help to account for fur ther bumps along the road ahead. Balance the needs of a foreign and local workforce Unemployment remains a contentious topic, with mil lions of people across the region losing their jobs fol lowing the initial economic fallout in 2020. Consequently, governments have been facing mounting pressure to protect the jobs and livelihoods of local employees, and resultant policies have inevitably presented un wanted complications for global mobility teams.

While it remains to be seen how the pandemic will con tinue to play out in the coming months, it is crucial for companies to bear in mind that the needs of their expatriate staff will remain everevolving amidst the highly uncertain and volatile situ ation. Conscious effort and flexible policies should be put in place to help employ ees feel supported and looked out for, so that together, all parties can look to emerge on the other side stronger.

In times like these, an expatriate’s need for their company’s support has per haps never been greater, and talent mobility teams must rise to meet this challenge. From providing access to mental health resources and programmes to conducting regular employee check-ins, the focus should be on en suring that staff feel seen, heard, and remembered.

52 | August 2022 storyoverC centre stage over the last two years, mental health and well being have also emerged as key priorities of employees, with many even considering them the top challenge stemming from the pandemic. Around the world, govern ment-mandated lockdowns had driven many to involun tary isolation for extended periods of time, resulting in increased feelings of loneli ness and depression. For expatriates who have been away from their families and friends for an extended period, this has only increased the pull of homesickness. The consequences of this have manifested in an exodus of foreign workers from longstanding expatriate hubs, particularly across cities in China and Hong Kong, which

The rise of flexible remote working arrangements has also allowed for staff in certain roles to carry out their duties from locations around the world. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that employees will be able to carry out all their duties from their home countries, it does open up the possibili ties of having them relocate to nearby countries (such as from Hong Kong to Singapore) on a temporary basis to wait out restrictions, or be ing deployed on a long-term basis to a reopened regional hub. In addition to offering employees more freedom of movement, this will also allow them to leverage re gional support and resources while managing multiple markets from a single location.With cross-border mobility becoming ever more complex amid the myriad of macro economic issues, tightening foreign manpower measures, and concerns around em ployee well-being, today’s talent mobility teams are facing more challenges than ever as they look to get their staff back overseas into a gradually reopening world.

The focus should be on ensuring that staff feel seen, heard, and remembered

lEE Quan E is Regional Director for Asia, ECA International About the Author are maintaining strict lockdown and travel restrictions.

Have you read “On War” by Carl von Clausewitz, 1832? Probably not. But it is inter esting, because everyone seems to love the analogy of the difficulty of acquiring and retaining talent with the challenges of war.

The war for talent and the future of work

The future of work continues to change as we build it, but one thing seems very likely to remain the same for years to come the war for talent. Here are some principles from the past that will serve well in the ambiguity of the future

53August 2022 | storyoverC

By Clinton Wingrove

So, as we are addicted to the metaphor that recruiting top talent is a war, it is worth exploring the Princi ples of War and extracting apposite lessons from them for business. Various coun tries have adopted slightly different numbers, names, and descriptions for these principles but they are all extremely similar. Here we review the most common model of 10 principles and link them to a sound busi ness approach.

1. Select and Maintain a Clear Aim No business has ever grown from an idea to success without a clear and deci sive purpose. That aim must then pervade the organi sation’s culture. A Clear Aim provides focus for all actions, processes and endeavours; it’s the over riding principle and it’s the reference against which to test decisions and gauge progress. In simple terms, if you want to attract, develop, and retain top talent, they will want to know your WHY

Carl von Clausewitz was a young Prussian major, fighting in battles imme diately preceding Water loo in 1815. Those experiences shaped the way he thought about warfare. He later became a general and a military theorist. Clause witz argued that war could not be waged successfully merely as a logistical exer cise. He argued that war demanded rapid, quality decision making by those in command – respond ing promptly to unexpected events that arise in the vola tility, uncertainty, complex ity, and ambiguity of war. SoundClausewitz’sfamiliar?work helped form the basis of military doctrine and what are now known as the Principles of War. These principles of war are ignored or forgotten at the peril of command ers and leaders; indeed, most military failures can be attributed, at least in part, to a failure to understand or apply them. And so it is in business – manag ers and leaders who apply researched, robust, and tested principles avoid fail ure and achieve success. Most of those who don’t apply the principles fall by the wayside.

Don’t get distracted trying to emulate, to compete with, or to catch up with other organisations

5. Surprise Surprise is a market winner. It comes in many forms but can be exemplified in consumer-relevant innova tion that takes the market unawares and reshapes the environment to the bene fit of the business. So, to attract top talent you need to demonstrate a culture of creativity, innovation, and courage.But,your organisa tion should also expect to be surprised themselves, whether by competitors, pandemics, international supply chain issues, finan cial instability, or something more obscure. You need to demonstrate your ability to spot, manage, and even capitalise on risks.


6. Concentration of Force Concentration of Force involves the tivesynchronised,decisive,andeffecapplicationofassets to realise specific outcomes. It requires organisations to understand their core business strengths and the processes that allow them to engage with their market in an agile manner. It requires Top talent want to know that you concentrate on success, statusstructures,bureaucracy,notand

3. Offence is Better than Defence It is easy to adopt a perspec tive that you need to emulate or even defend yourselves against other organisations. But offence is the practi cal way in which an organ isation most easily gains advantage, sustains momen tum, and seizes the initia Youtive. need a mindset of internal entrepreneurship – proactively opportunitiesidentifyingandstriving to take advantage of them. This positive state of mind creates prompt action rather than reluctant reaction. Offensive action implies a robust, incisive - but not necessarily aggressiveapproach to

2. Maintain Morale Organisations whose work forces have poor morale lack sustainability, find it hard to add value, and strug gle to motivate their staff. Conversely, organisations in which morale is high are far more productive, are more agile, and have a ‘passion to win’. Yes, morale is powerful - it is the intangi ble fuel that permeates and drives successful organisa tions. But, it also acts like a magnet for new talent. Organisations with great morale do not have to tell that to potential candidates –the candidates come because they have heard about it from others. Social proof will drive candidates to you.

4. Security Security is the creation and maintenance of an operat ing environment that allows managers and leaders the freedom of action to achieve objectives. Underpinning security is a hensiveunderstandingprofoundofcompreriskmanagement. It is a judicious mix of legal, financial, and procedural actions to ensure that assets are protected and that indi viduals have the freedom to create value in the business. Top talent want to know that, if they join you, they will be equipped, enabled, and encouraged to use their abilities to the fullest. Make that clear!

54 | August 2022 storyoverC – what you stand for and what it will mean for them. Define your mission (why you exist) and your vision (what that look will like in when achieved).

bilities and limitations of others), and mutual respect and trust. Does your talent attraction, selection, and recruitment process get that message across? 10. Sustainability Sustainability has two dimensions. First, what is your organisation doing to maximise sustainabil ity e.g., attention to carbon footprint, recycling, reduc ing use of plastics? Second, what is your organisation doing to maximise its own sustainability? Does your talent attraction, selection, and recruitment process demonstrate that you have strategic management who are focused beyond the short-term stakeholder demands and on ways of ensuring long-term success?

9. Collaboration Collaboration includes, but is more than, simple team work. It includes sharing of dangers, burdens, risks and opportunities in every respect. It relies on three related elements: a common aim, a clear division of responsibilities (includ ing understanding of, and compensation for, the capa

55August 2022 | storyoverC

c linton Win G rov E is the Principal Consultant, Clinton HR Ltd leaders to know when, how, and where to apply assets, irrespective of organisa tional hierarchies and policies.Top talent want to know that you concentrate on success, not bureaucracy, structures, and status. They want to know that the use of their talent will be focused on achieving success.

If we are truly in a war for talent, then we need to think strategically about how we can win that war. The ten principles of war provide a framework against which to assess and correct our talent attraction, selection, and recruitment commu nications, processes, and logistics. How well does your organisation’s talent attraction, selection, and recruitment processes, logis tics, and communications compare with those princi ples?

manpower, materials, and influence in relation to the achievement of objectives. It is not necessarily about making things simple - it is about making them easy, effective, and least demand ing.Economy of effort is best summarised as the right tool in the right place, at the right time, leading to the right result. Does your talent attraction, selection , and recruitment process convey recruitment process send that message?

7. Economy of Effort Economy of effort is the judicious exploitation of a passion for efficiency and effectiveness? 8. Agility Agility is about being adaptable and flexible. It also comprises


People Matters and MediBuddy recently concluded the Buddies of Wellness: Best Wellness programmes of 2022. Here is a brief snapshot of the winners and some insights into how they forged winning wellness programmes that pushed the boundaries of employee well-being

Winners of the BestprogrammeWellness 2022. Meant to recognise the companies that have created outstanding and impact ful wellness programmes, the Buddies of Wellness recognition initiative ended with 11 winners, each with their own unique and robust emphasis on creat ing the right wellness initi atives. These winners built programmes that lever aged digital technology and organisation-wide support to create meaningful change. Here is a peek into what made our winners truly impactful.

56 | August 2022

By People Matters Editorial Team In support of efforts towards employeerecreatingwellness in the workplace, scaling ever new heights, People Matters in partnership with MediBuddy curated the Buddies of Wellness: Best Wellness programmes of

gNell-beiw Champions Well-being:of

Employees also had access to 24x7 counselling services with trained psychologists, free access to Headspace (a medi tation and wellness application), and membership in the compa ny’s virtual medical platform on MediBuddy.Genpact’s employee wellbeing programmes helped key engagement metrics improve by 50%. In the company’s Bank ing and Capital Markets division in India, concerted efforts saw a rise in their wellness quotient. The company also reported a high employee satisfaction rate with their wellness initiatives, with over 100% of employees saying they would recommend the programme to their peers. The company regularly solic ited employee feedback during implementation to improve participation and engagement. The company used tech nology solutions such as AI-enabled chatbots to gather employee feedback and satis faction scores. In addition, a separate virtual assistant called ‘Watercooler’ helped repli cate information conversations and connections held in the office, ensuring team members remained connected despite working in different locations through award nights, happy hours, and shared images and videos helped enhance collab oration. Company leaders who participated in these activi ties set a positive example and connected with different team members.Bykeeping employees at the centre of all their initia tives and leveraging technology to make wellness accessible, Genpact has created a culture that encourages employees to strive for holistic wellness and supports them at each step.

57August 2022 | gNell-beiw

With two unique well ness programmes that helped employees connect and ensure comprehen sive well-being, Genpact’s Bank ing & Capital Markets vertical in India helped its digital work force become more engaged and included. The BCM Unwind programme includes weekly leadership events with one-onone virtual listening sessions with senior company leaders, quick and informal sessions with colleagues at mutually conven ient time slots, and virtual team happy hours. There’s also a parenting support commu nity called i-Support that helps parents access resources like webinars, blogs, and articles from children experts to help balance work, supervise chil dren and keep them engaged. Sessions for parents and chil dren that include storytelling, art, and craft are also held. Team members also assemble virtually to share their writings, poems, and other creative projects. Creating social connections and ensuring employees working remotely have opportunities to connect are also prioritised. The second physical#IChooseWellnessprogramme,ensuredandmentalwellness for all employees. Besides encour aging employees to remain physically active by participat ing in activities such as hiking, biking, running, yoga and swim ming, this programme also organised virtual Zumba, yoga,

leveraging digital and ai tools for impact: genpact (Banking & Capital Markets Vertical) dance, and music therapy sessions. Through partnered events and sessions, employees also received support for finding purpose in their work, manag ing stress, building resilience, and ensuring financial wellness.

Juniper believes that addressing mental and physical employee well ness is critical in creating a solid foundation for a culture of constant innovation. The company, which boasts a multigenerational workforce in the country, has many ongoing programmes that champion the cause of employee well-being. Among Juniper's host of well ness initiatives, the top two are the TaskHuman Wellness App and the Cleo Family support programme.Withtheir TaskHuman Well ness App, Juniper lever aged digital technologies to allow employees to access a live global network of well ness coaches for one-on-one private video calls any time of the day. The aim is to make it easier for the employees and their spouses/domestic partners to invest time and effort in their

58 | August 2022 gNell-beiw

Using technology to create comprehensive employee care: Juniper well-being, personal growth and mental health. With the coaches covering nearly 1,000 wellness categories, they can consult experienced professionals on personal goals, stressors, and interests. Launched in January 2021, Juniper uses technology as an accelerator of wellness bene fits. The benefits of using tech nology with the proper fore thought were evident in the results that Juniper obtained. In just over a year since implemen tation, Juniper employees have used over 1 million minutes of coaching via TaskHuman. Juniper places utmost prior ity on employees’ wellness and an annual survey is conducted to assess the impact of the vari ous wellness initiatives the company has in place to ensure it is focusing on the needs and considerations of all employ ees. The organisation’s wellness programme strategy and plan are shared with relevant stake holders before any programme launch, ensuring it meets employees' needs and aligns with the business strategy. Many of Juniper's wellness initiatives, such as the Cleo Family Support programme, Optum MyLivewell app, TaskHuman Wellness app and Mfine telehealth app, lever age the latest digital technology to create a holistic impact. Once the physical option wasn't avail able, Juniper seamlessly moved the wellness seminars and phys ical yoga sessions to live online sessions.Allonline sessions were conducted via the Microsoft Teams platform and record ings were shared with employ ees for easy round-the-clock access. Juniper has also taken to LinkedIn Learning and Yammer, an online platform which allows interactive idea exchanges, to promote employee wellbeing by creating the Employee Wellness programme learn ing path with several recom mended videos on various relevant topics. To increase employees' awareness and engagement across the well ness programmes, Juniper also launched the India Juniper WeCare Wellness programme in 2022. This holistic integration of the four dimensions of well ness helps employees build a stronger financial future, engage the mind, address physical ailments, and ultimately improve their overall well-being.

59August 2022 | gNell-beiw

significant decline in mobility. To address this concern, Max Life introduced the Healthify Smart initiative so that employ ees could access much-needed assistance and information to lead healthy lives. Over nine hundred employees joined the programme within 1.5 months of the launch.

Another simple yet effective initiative by Max Life has been Wellness Wednesdays. This is a bi-weekly reminder that urges employees to live a healthier, more active lifestyle focused on their mental and physical well-being. There are a variety of methods that Max Life has adopted to keep its employees engaged in leading a healthy lifestyle. They have sessions focused on mental well-being (mindfulness sessions, art therapy), physical well-being (yoga, weight loss exercises, Tabata training) and diet (dietary hacks, immunitybuilding food, losing weight at home).Max Life has ensured all its programmes and initiatives are digitally accessible to all employees, either through its mobile app or collaboration platform Workplace. In addition, recordings of all live sessions are kept on the platform for employees to view at a convenient time. The company has also developed comprehensive strategies to encourage healthy behaviours. Employees are informed of all the support and benefits available to them and how to access the benefits weekly via mailers and digital platforms. Max Life also proactively collects employee feedback and shares health stories as testimonials to encourage more employee participation. Using Pulse and Engagement surveys efficiently, Max Life gathers information about employees' sentiments. These responses are used to fine-tune the wellbeing programmes as per employees' requirements. Max Life has also participated in external surveys like Workforce and Increment Trends Survey by Deloitte to understand more about the best wellness practices in peer organisations and where they stand.

Max Life Insurance made employees key stake holders in accelerating their own wellness. The insur ance company has several ongoing initiatives focusing on employees’ mental and physical well-being.WithHealthify Smart, Max Life has launched an artificial intelligence-based programme that helps employees create easy-to-follow diet and workout plans, where they can eat what they want but with the proper nutritional values to support their fitness goals. They also have access to 24x7 assistance from their AI Coach, at-home workout videos and food reci pes based on their fitness goals. In developing this programme, the company considered the fact that employees work ing from home have seen a supporting employee wellness with ai for smarter solutions: Maxlife Insurance

Wipro's commit ment to well-beingemployeetrans

leaders, specifically the FrontLine Managers (FLMs), to be equipped with the right skills to recognise any signs of psycho logical distress and align strat egies to support their affected team members. Wipro's impact analysis research has shown that 73% FLMs are very confident in identifying well-being concerns post attending the programme, and 90% FLMs reported they are always encouraging their teams for well-being connections. The company's Consumer Digital Operations team has a dedicated line function for Employee well-being, called the WeRe (well-being and Resil ience) team. Additionally, well ness programmes are governed by the Occupational & Psycho logical Safety and Health model. Data-driven decisions are fundamental to Wipro's approach to

lated into a host of concerted efforts towards ramping up well ness programmes. The well ness programmes represent ative of Wipro's approach to employee wellness are their GearUp and the Behaviour Spotting programmes. The GearUp programme works with a preventive approach targeted at an individual level as an onboarding initia tive across all locations. This programme equips employees with the right attitude, knowl edge, and behaviour towards mental health and well-being and also works towards normal ising well-being engagements. In-house research has shown that more than 60% of the partic ipants who previously thought "only emotionally weak people seek counselling" had changed their opinion post attending the programme. Gear-up played a significant role in taking new employees toward a fruitful, positive work journey and equip ping them with a psychological safety toolkit. The company also worked with its managers and leaders to further facilitate employee wellbeing. The second programme, which works at an organisation/ leadership level, is the Behav iour Spotting programme. It can be defined as a psychological first aid programme designed for

60 | August 2022 gNell-beiw

example of Wipro's reliance on technology and data is the auto matic emails generated to notify aligned wellness coaches if any employee reported sub-par scores on the well-being survey or did not attend well-being check-ins three consecutive times. The coaches then contact such employees for check-in and follow-ups if required. Due to the pandemic, most of these programmes have been taking place


strengthening employee welfare using data-driven decisions: Wipro

Duringvirtually.thepandemic, Wipro used synchronised e-learn ing sessions to promote wellbeing and create a sense of awareness. The company intro duced employees to a mind fulness app to help with relaxa tion and de-stressing techniques whenever required. With strong efforts to collect data to under stand employee sentiment and health about any current events that may impact employee wellbeing is a fundamental practice, Wipro can make accurate datadriven decisions to promote well ness.

61August 2022 | gNell-beiw

Infosys, the Indian IT giant, has had a long record of putting employees and their mental and physical well-being on top of their list of priorities. Today, the company has over 900 ongoing initiatives aiming to better the work life of 150,000 Infoscions. Two of Infosys' most empowering initiatives have been Samaritans-on-the-go and HALE, Infosys' employee wellbeing programme. Samaritanson-the-go is a peer-to-peer counselling network of Infos cions who are trained in barefoot counselling and provide support to other employees, helping them cope with personal and professional issues. Employ ees can access this programme through Infosys' internal app, InfyME. This programme encom passes over 100 Samaritans across different locations. HALE, Infosys's Employee well-being programme, was reimagined during the pandemic. They built a sustain able 3-tiered model to help employees navigate their well ness journey. The programme covers three aspects: self-help, micro environment and macro environment. Having moved to a hybrid work model, Infosys' future points more in the direc tion of creating virtual envi ronments that nurture and harbour the concept of "Co-exist, Co-create & Collaborate". When it comes to the macro envi ronment, the focus is on driv ing programmes centrally and

Creating multifaceted wellness initiatives and addressing work-life balance: Infosys integrating all the pieces of the puzzle.Asthe pandemic forced everyone to become more physically distant, technol ogy became the solution for all needs, connectivity and other wise. Infosys has leveraged several solutions to curate a culture of well-being in the 'new normal. For example, mapping a well-being profile of the organ benefits such as applying for COVID leaves, accessing COVID helplines and emergency support, COVID soft loan, well ness FAQs and more on the Infyme Mobile App. Infosys also conducts fort nightly, comprehensiveorganisation-wide,employee satis faction surveys to gauge the effectiveness of processes and programmes, including the isation by using feedback data from various initiatives, analys ing patterns in utilisation of wellbeing services and following global contemporary well-being trends were all part of the well ness efforts. By using all this data, the company was able to get a bird's eye view of the well-being strata present in the organisation. This enabled them to launch more focused inter ventions for various employee categories. Infosys also ensured all employees could access Health and Wellness initiatives. The IT major has seen a 14% increase in participation from Infoscions quarter-on-quarter in their response towards wellness initiatives. The wellness meas ures available at every employ ee's disposal have enabled them to be more active and reduce their sedentary lifestyle. The opportunity to work from home and continuous focus on wellness has decreased absen teeism by 98% from FY20 to FY21.

Zomato needed de-stigmatisation of mental health, encouraging open conversations among one another and greater awareness regarding the gravity of mental health. Employees have also gained the confidence to reach out to their managers and team leads to discuss their struggles and provide feedback about things that have been helpful or unhelpful. This comfort level has been a major part of help ing Zomato reduce stress and increase employee motivation. The second achievement has been creating a psychologically safe work environment for every one, leading to a happier and more content workforce. This has also culminated in a health ier lifestyle for each individual that aids personal and profes sionalZomato'sgrowth.Wellness Team maintains a database of the number of employees reach ing out for support. With the help of all this data, it becomes easy for the company to identify the frequency of concerns and look for patterns. For example, difficulties faced by a particu lar team decreased the progress rate amongst people. Employ ees also receive feedback forms after every group session or activity to understand what they took away from the session, what they would have done differently, and what other topics they would like to discuss.

Zomato also rolls out frequent Pulse Check Surveys across the organisation every few months to keep track of changes that are being experienced and areas that still need improve ment. All Wellness content and initiatives are backed by research. This includes Well ness Tips sent out to employ ees and all facts mentioned in the modules shared in group sessions/campaigns. Almost all of the Wellness Team's initiatives are conducted through online platforms like Zoom to make things convenient for those working from home or other offices at different locations in the country. The Wellness Team is also creating an 'E-Training Wellness Module' to prepare Zomans to provide the first line of assistance for themselves, fellow Zomans, or anyone who might require support for their emotional well-being using video animation.

De-stigmatizing mental health and encouraging open conversations:

62 | August 2022 The organisation has many programmes that exem plify its commitment to championing the cause of employee well-being. All well ness programmes are designed to be both accessible and engaging. The company contin uously creates relevant wellness content and shares it across its platforms. Zomato created an 11-member strong Wellness Team comprising five psychol ogists, four fitness trainers, and two consulting psychiatrists. The Team helps create rele vant programmes that are tuned to address employee needs. In March 2021, the Team intro duced Humans of Zomato: a platform for Zomans to come forward and share unique and inspiring chapters from their lives.An important outcome of these initiatives was the much-


25,000 participants and 2,500 family teams are a part of an eight-week challenge to improve their physical activity, diet, hydration, sleep, and wellness. By creating friendly competition where each location, business unit, team, and individual competed, the company accelerated adoption. Those who emerge as winners also share their approach on internal and external platforms to motivate others. The company's mental and emotional health wellness programmes include diverse initiatives like employee assistance programmes that offer counseling from certified professionals and a dedicated platform to discuss worklife topics such as managing stress, maintaining good health, and solving conflicts. These initiatives have helped Cognizant employees become more aware, engaged, and motivated while improving their health and those of their families.

Diverse benefits and gamification for success: Cognizant

Cognizant uses several technology platforms and partners to improve employee access and participation. Besides internal platforms, services of third-party providers such as Healthify are used to measure and analyse participation. All webinars, consultations, and sessions as a part of the Employee Assistance programme are held digitally, and over 1900 users have sought professional help through these programmes. Similarly, 1980 expecting mothers enrolled in the Magic of Motherhood (MOM) programme.Allprogrammes are designed after consultation with diverse stakeholders and partnering with the DEI, LGBTQ, women, and millennial councils. Inter nal affinity groups help identify expectations, collect feedback, and improve the rollout of specific initiatives. Incentives in rewards, celebrity sessions, and financial health aware ness programmes also helped increase motivation. By provid ing its employees with acces sible, creative, and innovative encouragement to prioritise health and using quizzes, concerts, and stand-up perfor mances to educate participants, Cognizant has helped its work force make healthier changes to their lives.

63August 2022 |

Cognizant is a global IT services and consulting company that addresses its employee wellness needs with a range of targeted employee wellness programmes that focus on participants' physi cal, mental, financial, and social well-being. These initiatives use the 'ABS' approach of creating awareness, promoting behav ioural sustenance, and monitor ing success. For example, the 'Be Well' programme covers 370 initiatives covering more than 250,000 employees and their dependents. These programmes involve health experts and professionals from diverse fields who offer employees the guid ance and support to prioritise theirThehealth.'Cognizant Health Challenge’ is a gamified flagship programme in its seventh consecutive year, wherein


64 | August 2022 Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd. is a leading programmeTheing,tionpharmaceuticalmultinationalformuladevelopment,’siCAREwellnesshelpsemployees and their families with specific COVID support measures such as partnerships with hospi tals for priority admission, 24x7 medical support and ambu lance services, and meals for families in COVID distress. It also includes support for critical medicines, oxygen, and diagnos tics, access to a 30-bed COVID treatment centre, vaccination, and care of surviving family members in case of demise. In addition, employees recovering from the infection received daily check-ins, support, and medical supervision to detect complica tions. The company also opera tionalised a 24x7 call centre to provide the required information andTosupport.complement this, the company also has the iFIT

Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd. programme that encourages employees to cultivate behav ioural changes and be phys ically active. Participants competed with each other in teams under different catego ries such as walking, jogging, or running (steps), cycling (kilome tres), and cardio skeletal exer cises (minutes). The company’s CRS division pledged to donate INR 25 for every kilometre, 1500 steps, or 10 minutes of exer cise completed. To focus on the health of women employees, the company started ‘Desk to 5K’ wherein participants received training by a professional triath lete to walk or jog 5km at the end of the 90-day programme. With these interventions, Intas integrated health and wellbeing into its work culture and encouraged employees to live a healthier lifestyle. With more than 16,000 employees partic ipating in these programmes, the company donated more than INR 79,30,000 to help chil dren fighting cancer due to the recorded steps, kilometres, and minutes of Technologyactivity.played a vital role in implementing these wellness measures at Intas. For exam ple, the company’s global crisis management team connected virtually every week to prepare and update the status for the iCARE programme, which involved live tracking COVIDpositive employees. In addi tion, an internal platform helped employees get live access to medical help, resources, and advice. A particular vaccination portal also displayed the vacci nation status of all individuals and their family members, which helped plan meetings, site visits, and other events. With rich experience in medi cal support, Intas was able to choose the right intention, design, and approach to implement ing comprehensive employee well-being measures that helped employees improve their well ness, engagement, and trust in the company.


Creating healthy competition for better engagement:

promoting Wellness first: Tech Mahindra Limited tem accessible 24x7 through wellness apps and integrated portals to implement and measure these programmes. This helped provide person alised and real-time medical care to employees and their family members. The compa ny’s wellness programmes are integrated into eight dimen sions: Physical, Occupational, Emotional, Spiritual, Social, Envi ronmental, Financial, and Intel lectual. By making wellness more accessible and analys ing data points to make targeted improvements, Tech Mahindra is demonstrating how its mantra of “Wellness Before Business” is a way of aees,ers,approachUsinglife.amulti-layeredthatinvolvedleadmanagers,andemployTechMahindrahasbuiltHumannetworkofwell


Tech Mahindra believes that ensuring a healthy workplace is more than just preventing illness, injuries and accidents. It’s a positive approach to improv ing the overall well-being of an organisation, its employees and their loved ones. Over 10,000 employees participated in their ‘Wellness 101 Challenge’, a global wellness contest to focus on physical and emotional wellbeing . The ‘Kick the Butt’ smok ing cessation programme also witnessed a 79.4% increase in annual engagement, and 10% of the participants reduced daily cigarettes by 100%, 23% cut them by 50%, and 7% reduced them to 1 per day.. Tech Mahindra created an embedded wellness ecosys

65August 2022 |

Tech Mahindra, a leading provider of digital trans formation, consulting, and business re-engineering services and solutions, adopted a multifaceted approach for its employee wellness needs. The company relied on personalised technology solutions to ensure employee well-being during the pandemic while maintaining business continuity. Its AI Coach tool uses positive reinforcements to nudge managers in improv ing their frequency of communi cation, reducing negative tones, using positive vocabulary, and recognising good work. This not only promotes psychological safety at the workplace but also improves managerial effective ness and employee morale.

ness champions. These ‘Well ness Samaritans’ work with the ‘Central Wellness Team’ along side ‘Wellness Warrior Groups’ and ‘Location Council Members’ to facilitate check-ins, organise expert talks, and curate train ing and personalise wellness content across all locations. In addition, using external partners like Medibuddy and YourDost, Tech Mahindra has been able to provide value added counsel ling services, medical support, home sample collection, deliv ery of medicines, personalised diet, and nutrition plans etc. As a people-centric company, Tech Mahindra is focused on expanding their vision of holistic wellness with a tech-enabled bouquet of wellness services as well as a ‘Wellness Menu’ to let employees personalise their wellness experiences.

Expleo is a global engi neering, technology and consulting service provider that partners with leading organ isations to guide them through their business transformation. The company initiated a ‘Gift a Leave’ policy in 2020 that allows its workforce to support their colleagues during challeng ing times and create a culture of goodwill and trust. Addition ally, the workforce is given prac tical, easy-to-follow guidelines for improving transparency and maintaining a healthy work-life balance to help them manage their time and communica tion effectively. Close monitor ing by the leadership team and connecting with employees and their family members help strengthen the trust and serve as an opportunity to learn more about the needs of everyone in

establishing frequent connections with leadership and ensuring communication:robust’s ‘Employee Wellness and Assistant programme (EWAP)’ provided support and resources to all employees, delivered in a confidential manner. Besides providing medical support, the programme offers access to professional counsellors, ‘Tran quil’ mindfulness application, peer support groups, self-help tools, and health and wellness webinars.Dueto the scale and scope of these proactive measures and initiatives, employee satis faction grew by 15 points in the past two years, and a major ity of the new employees have started considering the well ness programme and healthy work culture a considerable perk. The efforts taken by the Human Resources function also benefited the organisation in find ing new talents, observing 23% of the talent inflow coming through referral, as current employees appreciate the measures taken to offer wellness benefits and health support.Thefocus during implemen tation was to ensure communi cation channels were accessi ble and involve the leadership team to set the best bench mark. Sharing employee expe riences and success stories and organizing one-minute chal lenges, competitions, and quiz zes helped strengthen communi cation and boost confidence. The organisation also runs custom ised programmes that include healthy lifestyle campaigns, financial fitness campaigns and safety campaigns, policies and processes and much more. The company’s leadership team, HR team, and employee assistance partners collaborated to create a seamless framework that encour aged employees to focus on their health at work as well as at home. To ensure that every one remained connected and engaged, Expleo helped resources to take needed breaks and set a fixed time for sched ules, limit the number of calls, and take time off as required. The company also supported manag ers in following healthy and productive professional habits. Expleo used digital collabora tion platforms to establish virtual connections regularly.

66 | August 2022



67August 2022 |

Rockwell Automation is the largest company in the world dedicated to industrial automation and infor mation. Rockwell focused on building resilience and provid ing comprehensive wellness to ensure that employees experi ence maximum consistency and minimum disruption while adopting a remote or hybrid work model. Rockwell Automation India introduced an annual wellbeing calendar covering various wellness aspects, including the physical, psychological, financial, and cultural. It also geared its communication, engagement, and recognition policies to focus on health and wellness. Besides visible and regular communica tion from the top leadership, Rockwell provided access to wellness apps, organised educa tional wellness programmes, and facilitated employee resource groups focused on health. In addition, regular surveys and questionnaires with specific health-related aspects helped the company assess how the employees are feeling and what could be done to support them better.These responses helped devise many innovative and engaging initiatives, such as the ‘Step It Up’ challenge, wherein participants logged in more than 16 million steps, and the ‘Healtha-thon,’ which saw the partici pation of over 500 employees. Moreover, specific measures to help employees manage COVID-19 and its stresses were make wellness a part of your culture: Rockwell Automation Pvt. Ltd. introduced, including enhanced insurance coverage, modi fied leave policies, internal helplines, and easier access to scarce resources. These initia tives have helped the company improve employee engagement scores and helped well-being become an integral part of the workplace culture. Increasing participation and higher utilisa tion of employee assistance programmes and applicationbased services indicate the overall success in adoption and sustained engagement. The company’s employee assistance programme and tele medicine are available 24x7 digi tally, and remote counselling is also available to employees. The company’s leadership and, more crucially, managers became the most important drivers of these programmes. The company trained managers in conduct ing effective conversations and collecting feedback virtually. They were also made aware of how to identify signs of distress in their team members. Rockwell provided special attention and support to ensure managers could implement these initia tives without feeling exhausted or over-burdened. Rockwell’s timely shift to make wellness a strong pillar of its organisational culture by providing accessi ble and valuable resources has positively impacted its workforce and business by defining a new way of working that prioritises well-being and flexibility.


68 | August 2022

Smart lessons from a CEO’s career

Sharon Price John’s fabulous career is full of lessons on how to get past those fears and get out of your own way. The fears that come on your path to career progress are aplenty. Being afraid to ask for that next job. Being afraid to take credit. Being afraid to speak up. But as Sharon Price John’s career suggests, the fears of what could go wrong are often wildly overexaggerated, and the upsides of what could go right are underestimated.Butfirst, who is Sharon? She is the President and CEO of BuildA-Bear Workshop Inc, a teddy bear retailer headquartered in St Louis, USA. She has turned the company around in just a few years and repositioned the twodecade-old brand for the future.

Rita McGrath and M Muneer Have you been planning to take that career move, but not done so because of the “what ifs” fear?


Planning to take a career risk?

Great Resignation makes job and career movements look so easy. But what about our fears, which are so often the greatest obstacle? Here, we draw some lessons from career of Sharon Price John, President and of Build-A-Bear Workshop Inc

In her forthcoming book, “Stories and Heart,” Sharon recounts an early episode in her life of ambitiously determining to climb a huge beech tree. She made it to the branch she wanted to climb, and then realised that despite weeks of planning to get up the tree, she had somehow neglected to figure out how to get back down! Most of us can relate to this experience as children. As

The fears of what could go wrong are often wildly over-exaggerated, and the upsides of what could go right are under-estimated

Don’t overthink everything As someone from a small town in rural Tennessee working at a fancy advertising agency in New York, the clash of backgrounds with co-workers could be tough to navigate. This situation is very familiar to most executives in India. And yet, as Sharon points out, it would be a mistake to take every mismatch of expectations as an insult or put-down – sometimes, it’s just funny! As Eleanor Roosevelt famously said, “no one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” This is most apt for many folks in the new India where discrimination based on caste, creed, income, religion and even political affiliation is rising.

she reflected on the experience, she consciously noted that setting challenging goals could be labelled scary (it might be bad) or exciting (it might be awesome). Pick ing “awesome” made the setting of challenging goals something to be enjoyed, not feared. Writing the goals down also makes them much more executable. So here are a few smart ways you can pan for the risk: Sometimes you have to experience what you don’t want to learn what you do want

What’s the worst thing that could happen?

69August 2022 | dershipAel

Sharon was a guest speaker at Rita’s inaugural Women in Lead ership class at Columbia Executive Education when a partici pant asked her whether she would advise women to ask for a raise or promotion. She blinked, and then said, “Of course – what’s the worst that could happen? They might say no, but now they know you are interested and can give you suggestions about what might allow you to qualify for that role.”

Sharon’s first try at attending a large university didn’t go so well – she ended up returning home to take a break, worked at a blue jean pick-and-pack facility and could easily have given up. But when her co-workers asked her to slow down because she was making them look bad, she realised that settling for the mediocre wasn’t what she wanted in life. She went back to school, changed her major to advertising and created a personal rubric for making deci sions based on her middle name, PRICE: Perseverance. Respect. Intelligence. Creativity. Excel lence. These came to be critical to her future choices.

The two things you learn in business school Making a huge leap of faith to attend Columbia Business School, Sharon had to face down a lot of self-doubt. A rather cynical colleague said that you learn two things in business school. The first is that more money is better than less money. The second is that money now is better than money later. This was in the day

Failure isn’t fatal, but failure to change might be Just after doing everything right to launch a new, entrepreneurial product, 9/11 and the subsequent snarling of global supply chains doomed the venture. A move to the toy company Hasbro offered the chance to re-imagine what a corporate career might look like, and Sharon enjoyed considerable success with then-iconic products such as Furby and the Butter scotch pony. But after a corporate reorganisation basically elimi nated her job, a session with an executive coach led to the realisa tion that she had what it takes to be a CEO!

Twitter @MuneerMuh About the Author

70 | August 2022 when Columbia was very financefocused, just as most B-schools are. Seen through that lens, it was a dumb decision to give up her income and go into debt. What Sharon learned, however, was that the quantitative and linear thinking of this mindset could lead to blind spots. Her background in advertising and creative pursuits, coupled with financial know-how, would prove essential to her success in lead ership roles. She talked her way into a product management job at Mattel, working on the Barbie account, and even though that proved less lucrative than the roles taken by some of her more financially driven colleagues, it was a springboard to future success. This may seem very familiar for many of the 10+ year experienced MBAs when they look back at their batchmates.

The quantitative and linear thinking of the tomindsetmoney-firstcouldleadblindspots

Stop Doing Stupid Stuff; Start Doing Smart Stuff


Over time, organisations accu mulate habits. These habits make sense for the situation the organisation is in, but over time many no longer make sense. One of Sharon’s key precepts is to encourage people, with humour, to consider everything they are working on in the light of whether it is adding value or not. She says, think of it like the movie Groundhog Day, in which you don’t get past the day you’re in until you get it right!

r ita McGrat H is professor at Columbia Business School and founder of Valize, and M Mun EE r is the Co-Founder and Chief Evangelist at the non-profit Medici Institute.

’22 In association with YOU ARE THE ANSWER TO SUCCESSOUR Thank you for being there at Are You In The List 2022. 850+ applications 4 months 4 winners 6 jury WINNERS PARTNERS2022 MohantySneha HR MaerskIndia,MaerskLead,TankersTankers Presenting Partner Interview Partner See you next year at Are You In The List 2023 JainAastha Senior UnileverHindustanHRBP,Limited KatyalMonisha PvtIntelHRBusinessPartner,TechnologyLtd ShuklaManish Group HR professional in Talent & Engagement verticals and managing HR Partnering, ITC

Impression Management presents a hazard like the Iceberg Menace for the unwary. All of us like to display our best faces to the world. But what happens when that conceals outright fakery underneath?

The kind of personalities that excel in interview deception can play havoc with office politics and outside relationships

72 | August 2022 Beware of the deceitful impression manager


Iknew a man named Jackson once and I was scared of him. Jackson could change colours like a chameleon. At one moment he could be the most charming person around and, literally without batting an eyelid, turn and torture his prey with a tirade from his vicious tongue. Like the Jackson chameleon, he was also slow in his movements and ruth less in his behaviour with competitors.1 His dazzle and dashing actions were reserved for the people that counted – till they counted. Jacksons are not a rare species in the corporate world. But those who cannot see through how Jacksons package their pasts, pretend in performing and present themselves to the public, are destined to join the extinct species list themselves. This column is intended to prevent that from happen ing.Ishall not pretend the rest of us don’t manage impressions. What is differ ent about Fake Impression Builders (FIBs), are the deceit they use in doing so and the consequential harm they can cause to trusting individuals and enterprises. They are the frightening real isations of what happens when the lily and the rose accede to the tiger and the Saidviper:the tiger to the lily, Said the viper to the rose: Let us marry so our children


The collateral damage caused by FIBs also comes from the hunting packs they create for the sake of maximising reach and plausible deniability while minimising risk

73August 2022 | trlessdrohetAAvelled

May attain the double pose. With a feline half a flower –With the attar in the asp, We could institute a slaughThatter would make a planet gasp.2 Scripting selections Selection is meant to segre gate movers from fakers but FIBs are masters at script ing fictitiously puffed-up bio-data, acting them out in 'gamed' interviews and using both to make off with prize positions that their capabil ities do not merit. The inci dence of faking in interviews is fairly common and, even if we confine ourselves to 'Extensive Image Crea tion', (i.e. when candidates lie), the proportion of people faking rarely falls below 60%.)3 Cross-cultural stud ies show both power distance and in-group collectivism positively correlated with attitudes toward faking.4 Hence there is little reason to believe India is free from this malaise.Unfortunately, our battal ions of experienced inter viewers, whose Emotional Intelligence has been honed to the nth degree, also cannot protect us from these deceiv ers. Several studies have shown that "experience does not improve IM [Impression Management] detection. …[P] rofessional interviewers did not outperform novice inter viewers at detecting IM."5 As for Emotional Intelligence (a much-overused construct),6 Cit can be a positive handi cap in closing the doors to tricksters.7Whilestructured CV examinations and thorough reference checks can limit the impact of fudging, there are no such impediments in an interview. An astute FIB, facing an unknown inter viewer, uses three meth ods, often simultaneously. The first is the embellish ment or erasure of parts of the past track record as well as the higher-risk, higherreturn creation of non-exist ent achievement and recog nition. The second method is to lay flattery on with a trowel – without appearing to do so. Getting the interviewer to talk about the firm’s victories (often the same as the interview ing CEO’s), presents an endless stream of toast for buttering. The last method requires both pre-work with considerable presence of mind and involves giving the interviewer the answers s/ he wishes to hear. This is the way to go when speaking of values, principles and pref erences – which do not have a single correct answer. The problem for the selector is that s/he is in an echo cham ber, rejoicing in finding such a great cultural fit while

It is finally up to us to distinguish between true thought leadership and attractively coloured dishwatertrlessdrohetAAvelled

The stakes are much higher once the FIB is within the organisation. The risks become particularly severe when entrants score high on the 'psychopath' component of the Dark Triad.12 This personality disposition is capable of causing tremen dous harm to results and relationships while being least susceptible to blockage by the normal promotion filters of the psychopathicCEOs"themanagement."demandsarelianismtheity.onebleappropriatedinatebyallythat"[B]ehavioralorganisation.tendenciesareviewedasrelationdeviantwhendisplayedacoworkerorsubormaybeconsideredorevenadmira-whenenactedbysomeinapositionofauthorSpecifically,manyofqualitiesofMachiavelandpsychopathyconsistentwiththeroleofleadershipor13Asaresult,higherupanorganisa-tiononegoesthemorelikelyoneistofindcorporatepsychopaths."14DuttonfoundtobetheU.K.’smostprofession15andSteveTaylorwrotethat

74 | August 2022 being ignorant of the candi date’s true character and likelySomeconduct.interviewers try to brazen out the ignominy of being deceived by pretend ing that’s the kind of person they wanted to select. After all, wouldn’t such a smart operator be an asset in convincing people inter nally and even more so in persuading clients? But this is dangerous thinking. The kind of personalities that excel in interview deception can play havoc with office politics and outside relation ships. "Indeed, many of the antecedents of deceptive IM, such as … high scores on the dark triad are also associated with lower work performance or increased likelihood of engaging in counterproductive work behaviours."8Thereareways in which recruiters can minimie (though not eliminate) the possibility of getting taken in by con-artists with dark triadic leanings. An entire column has been devoted to avoiding such traps in CHRO selections and those ideas on interviewer choice, interview structure and 360º reference checks could all be helpful here.9 Additionally, it could be useful to supple ment the job specs with a clear set of 'select-out' crite ria.10 Needless to say, prefer ence for an internal talent pipeline can pre-empt some of the risks high-level exter nal selections invariably entail.11 That pre-supposes, of course, those internal assessment processes to avoid the traps and tricks posed by dark triaders who have already slipped in. Let’s examine these more closely.

The deadly game of impression manipulation

• A robust 360-degree process with tell-tale indicators of FIB character istics (the Hare Psychop athy Checklist is a useful Onceguide).21FIBs are entrenched, however, cures are pain ful and prolonged. Some of these have been elaborated on in an earlier column in the context of psychopaths in HR.22 Part of the prob lem is the FIB’s patrons, who have staked so much of their assessing reputations on the line for years. Exorcism is unavoidable if the evil spirit doesn’t flee when behaviour alibis start getting exposed but damage to the victim organisation can be severe, particularly if a senior FIB was in play. Purchasing public personas To recapitulate, limited Image Management is perfectly acceptable while trlessdrohetAAvelled

75August 2022 | "modern psychopaths gener ally don’t become [political] leaders in affluent countries (where they are perhaps more likely to join multina tional corporations)".16

FIBs: • Listening to complaints from employees who have been hurt or are simply observant.

• Assessing the terrain, identifying the powerful as well as the not-so-obvi ous power brokers, who can be potential patrons, supporters and (others who are just) pawns.

• HR keeping its ears to the ground20 and commanding influence enough to veto the progression of power ful FIBs.

We all resort to a degree of Impression Management.

• Manipulating the power ful to enter their

What distinguishes FIBs is the sheer ruthlessness with which they operate. As Babiak and Hare put it, "The goal of their game is to set up a scam within the organ isation’s structure that can fulfil their need for excite ment, advancement, and power – all without concern about harmful outcomes to others."17 The same authors set out the methodology that characterises FIBs:


• Abandoning the people (often including the patrons who protected and promoted them) and, ulti mately, the organisations that have been sufficiently parasitised and have no more pickings worth the FIB’s efforts. They almost invariably move on before their gamesmanship and sham are discovered. The collateral damage caused by FIBs also comes from the hunting packs they create for the sake of maximising reach and plau sible deniability while mini mising risk.19 These are perfect breeding grounds for futureThereFIBs.are three ways to make early identification of

76 | August 2022 facing selection and in one’s work career but there is a point below which it descends to deceit. Simi larly, all senior executives are conscious of their public images and nudge them in favourable directions. Here too a 'Lakshman Rekha' is crossed when people pay under the radar to breast the public image tape. Is paid personal public ity so unfair? Buying guidance and platforms for self-promotion are not as damaging (to corporates, at least) as visibleanddarktheirand,whospendsecutives'increasingingtiongrowingonlyofificationwouldtorswhichfiedbutperformanceTheytiouslydrugsisPerhapscohorts,innardsdisposedpsychopathicallyFIBsdevouringtheofenterprises.Foritismoreserious.thebestanalogyperformance-enhancingingestedsurreptibysportspersons.don’tdiminishtheofcompetitorstheydogiveanunjustiadvantagetoafew,ofthejudgesandspectaareunaware,andwhichleadtotheirdisqualiftheywere.Mostus(myselfincluded)haveavagueideaofthefast-sizeandsophisticaofthepersonalbrandservicebusiness.Annumberof'frog-arewillingtomoneyonadvisorscanstrategise,guideifnecessary,'ghost'transitionintotall,andhandsomeprincesmakethemprominentlyinseeminglyimpar-

tial media and communi cation platforms, so that their worth becomes appar ent even to those who have closed their ears to direct suasion.Herein lies the link with our opening section on selec tion. People who obtain high corporate positions through fakery, foul their corpo rate nests and get found out are yet able to repeat the same cycle time after time after time. A significant part of the answer lies in the (paid) manage ment of the public perso nas, with glories amplified and blunders suppressed. Brave would be the exec utive selector or board appointer who found such a paragon unsuitable. The same goes for award jurors, conference speaker selectors and 'top-ten' list compilers. Ultimately, the debasement of the credibility commons affects all professionals who have built reputations the hard way and relied on wordof-mouth for them to spread. Not only are they at a disadvantage compared to those who have hired hidden loud speakers but their brands stand discounted when people assume all medalists are on steroids.Containing public FIB is no easy task. Matters could be helped if image seekers, image providers and image judges followed some basic rules. Prospective image burnishers (potentially all of us) should strictly eschew forums (e.g. award events,23 conferences, webinars, publi cations, e-platforms) that charge nominees, speakers or writers. On the other side, event organisers, publish ers and platform hosts should not charge fees of any kind to those for whom they provide airtime or solicit advertise ments and sponsorships from their organisations.


6. Visty Banaji, Old MacHR has a farm(ula), E-I - E-IO!, People Matters, 14 May 2021.

21. Robert D. Hare, Without Conscience: The Disturb ing World of the Psychopaths Among Us, Guilford Press, 1999. 22. Visty Banaji, Wolves in HR clothing, 24 June 2020. 23. Visty Banaji, The (funny) business of HR awards, 18 February 2020.

1. David Badger, Lizards: A Natural History of Some Uncommon Creatures - Extraordinary Chameleons, Iguanas, Geckos and More, Motorbooks Interna tional, 2006.

2. Nathalia Crane, The Proposals, Venus Invisible: and Other Poems, Coward-McCann, 1928.

77August 2022 | v i Sty Bana J i is the Founder and CEO of Banner Global Consulting (BGC)

12. D L Paulhus and K M Williams, The Dark Triad of Personality: Narcissism, Machiavellianism, and Psychopathy, Journal of Research in Person ality, 36, 2002.

4. Clemens Fell, Cornelius König and Jana Kam merhoff, Cross-Cultural Differences in the Attitude Toward Applicants’ Faking in Job Interviews, Journal of Business and Psychology volume 31, pages65–85, 2016.

3. J Levashina and M A Campion, Measuring faking in the employment interview: Development and validation of an interview faking behavior scale. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92, 2007.

7. Nicolas Roulin and Marguerite Ternes, Is It Time to Kill the Detection Wizard? Emotional Intelligence Does Not Facilitate Deception Detection, Personal ity and Individual Differences, 137:131-138, January 2019.


5. Nicolas Roulin, Adrian Bangerter and Julia Levashina, Honest and Deceptive Impression Management in The Employment Interview: Can It be Detected and How Does It Impact Evaluations?, Personnel Psychology, 68(2), 2015.

18. Paul Babiak and Robert Hare, Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work, Harper Business; 2007. 19. Visty Banaji, The Dogs of (Office) War, People Matters, 25 February 2022.

24. Visty Banaji, Pyrrho, please pay another visit - A DIY kit for sniffing out BS in HR, 23 March 2017.

25. Christopher Rate and Robert Sternberg, When good people do nothing, in Janice LanganFox, Cary Cooper and Richard Klimoski (eds), Research Companion to the Dysfunctional Work place, Edward Elgar Publishing, 2007.

17. Paul Babiak and Robert Hare, Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work, Harper Business; 2007.

20. Visty Banaji, HR is a contact sport, 7 April 2020.

Where this is not possible the payment for the perfor mance should be promi nently declared. Similarly, personal branding service providers should make their client listings as well as the individual services provided, publicly accessible. The last (and most fail-safe) protec tion we have, as the reading, watching or hearing public, is to keep our sceptical guards up.24 It is finally up to us to distinguish between true thought leadership and attractively coloured dishwa ter which is the third-wash residue of someone else’s vessel that once contained grains of originality. Brain surgery Jackson continued to pros per since "those around the 'emperor' lacked courage."25 I had long since left the firm and was working abroad when an even more devious FIB got through the swollen samrat-head that Jack son was bad medicine. As Dostoevsky wrote: "Viper will eat viper, and it would serve them both right!" Before Jackson got booted out, however, many valuable future leaders had left in disgust and the firm’s repu tation for probity, managerial sophistication and the financial results them selves had all taken a hit from which recovery proved extraordinarily difficult.

The lesson is clear: FIBs who have made a top connect and purchased a public persona are like brain tumours: removing them can be nearfatal. Far better to eliminate them during selection or as soon as possible after they enter the corporate body.

13. Ernest O'Boyle Jr., Donelson Forsyth, George Banks and Michael McDaniel, A meta-analysis of the Dark Triad and work behavior: A social exchange perspective, Journal of Applied Psy chology, 97(3), 2012. 14. C R Boddy, The implications of corporate psycho paths for business and society: An initial exami nation and a call to arms, Australasian Journal of Business and Behavioural Science, 2005. 15. Kevin Dutton, The Wisdom of Psychopaths: What Saints, Spies, and Serial Killers Can Teach Us About Success, Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012.

10. Adrian Furnham, The Elephant In the Board room: The Causes of Leadership Derailment, Palgrave Macmillan; 2010. 11. Visty Banaji, Why great business leaders are rare, 1 May 2020.

16. Steve Taylor, Narcissists and psychopaths: how some societies ensure these dangerous people never wield power, The Conversation, 19 June 2019.


8. Nicolas Roulin and Joshua Bourdage, Once an impression manager, always an impression manager? Antecedents of honest and deceptive impression management use and variability across multiple job interviews, Frontiers in Psychology, 8(29), 2017. 9. Visty Banaji, Help! The CHRO I picked is a lemon - How CEOs can choose better HR heads, 14 March 2019.

People Matters 04 August 2022 (In dia), 25 August 2022 (SEA)

People Matters

Invitation Only Event: Are You In The List 2022 Awards Hybrid Event: TechHR 2022 Online Programme: Women in Leadership: Lead, Influence & Transform

A rousing success! Connecting hundreds of top speakers and thousands of delegates across India and Southeast Asia, People Matters TechHR brought #FreshEyes to the postpandemic milieu, offering paths to break away from the past and “see” the world with a new mind, new heart, and new intention. Thank you everyone who joined us to Become the Answer for your team, your business, and society!

BeNext15 August – 16 Sep tember 2022This programme is for leaders and practition ers interested in how the HRBP drives cultural shifts that align with the chang ing needs of teams and organisations in the new world of work. People Matters BeNext29 August – 30 Sep tember 2022This programme is for leaders and practition ers interested in how the HRBP drives cultural shifts that align with the changing needs of teams and organi sations in the new world of work.

BeNext05 September – 07 OctoberThis2022 programme is designed for leaders inter ested in gamification and learning how to master motivation and engagement in a fun but methodical ap proach.

78 |

Past Month's events

Ongoing Programmes

People Matters

BeNext18 July – 19 August 2022 This programme offered a boost to women leaders interested in accel erating their career growth within their organisation and learning critical skills for women heading a team. The next edition begins in December and is now open for enrolment!

Online Programme: Designing Employee Experience in the New World of Work Online Programme: HR Business Partner in the New World of Work Online Programme: Gamification & The Octalysis Framework: Strategies To Drive Human Motivation August 2022 People Matters 04 August Courageous2022HR leaders have developed and exercised new skills to meet the new challenges of 2022. This year, People Matters Are you In The List Awards identified a lineup of some of the most outstanding leaders who rose to the rising challenge of 2021, leaders who have become the answer to the struggles that businesses and work ers are continuing to face even today.

People Matters


Online Programme: Reframing Your C&B Strategy: Agility, Equity and Sustainability

BeNext 31 October – 02 November 2022 This program is designed for organizations with existing rewards programs interested in reframing their compensation and benefits strategy to create a more agile, equitable and sustainable strategy that drives business-wide change. This program would also be suitable for start-ups looking to move beyond the founding stage and gain a better understanding of how to craft a comprehensive rewards program. Early Bird Reg istration now available.

Upcoming events

programme is for HR leaders eager to gain practical, hands-on approaches to talent analyt ics, connecting HR policies and practices to business performance. Prior knowl edge of HR management, statistics and basic mana gerial accounting is useful. Early Bird Registration now available. Online

BeNext10 October – 11 No vember This2022 program is for HR leaders committed to finding creative solutions to complex problems facing their teams, moving from an understanding of Agile processes to a whole new mindset of creativity, innovation and people-centered progress. Early Bird Regis tration now available.

Online Programme: Talent Analytics: Driving Organizational Impact People Matters



Online Programme: Agile Culture for HR Teams People Matters

BeNext26 September – 28 OctoberThis2022 program is for leaders eager to gain practi cal, hands-on approaches to organizational L&D strate gies, connecting policies and practices to business performance. Prior knowl edge of capabilities-build ing, and L&D strategizing is useful but not indispensa ble. Early Bird Registration now available.

People Matters

People Matters

BeNext19 September – 21 OctoberThis2022

79August 2022 |


Companies that prioritise mental health and well-being will not only bring down their long-term health insurance costs but also retain more staff as attitudes towards employment practices and corporate culture shift in the wake of the pandemic Since the onset of the COVID19 pandemic in March 2020, the world of work has funda mentally changed. And while a dictionary's concept of what constitutes an "office" has not yet evolved with the times, many businesses have been working hard to create new working envi ronments that enable employees to thrive.

One reason why is because they are having to. Across a large number of industries, the Great Resignation or Rehiring has swung the pendulum in favour of employees’ requirements. Many organisations now know that they need to monitor attrition rates very closely, as they strive to improve their organisational reputation.ArecentDeloitte survey high lighted those younger workers in particular - from Generation Z and the millennials - want more of a work-life balance and longterm change. They are re-evalu ating their priorities and expect more from their employers. And companies are responding. The most recent EY 2022 Work Reimagined Survey revealed that a majority of respondents thought that their organisation’s culture had transformed for the better since the beginning of the pandemic. So too, 96% of compa nies reported that they have instituted changes to ensure the

80 | August 2022 The new paradigm: well-being for a new age Blogosphereworkforce >> Si G al a tz M on

81August 2022 | blogosphere security and well-being of their workers.Onekey shift has been the advent of hybrid working. The pandemic forced many people to work from home and that is where a large number of them want to stay. So businesses are adjusting their policies to allow fall.healththatcardiovascularingmanydepressionbeproductivebenefitButhavewell-beingniesreportingprivatelatewherenexthealthemployees'saidthree-quarters500companiesamongstress,2021,being.employeeappreciating‘work-from-anywhere,’thevalueofflexibilityandwell-Butthereisalongwaytogo.AMercerstudy,conductedinuncoveredhighlevelsofanxiety,burnout,andfear10,000USemployeesinemployingmorethanpeople.However,justoverofcompaniesalsothattheyaremakingtheirmentalandemotionalatoppriorityoverthethreetofiveyears.ItisasimilarpictureinIndiaanAssochamsurvey,in2021,revealedthat43%ofsectoremployeesarementalhealthissues.Themostenlightenedcompaunderstandthatemployeeissomethingtheyaresponsibilitytofocuson.theyalsoknowthatitwilltheirbottomlinetoo.Happieremployeesaremoreones.Theywillalsohealthiersinceanxietyandboosttheriskofchronicandlife-threatenconditionsfromdiabetestodisease.Focusingonpreventionmeansoverthelongerterm,insurancecostsshouldAKaiserFamilyFounda- tion survey examining Employer Health Benefits found that in the US, 39% of companies have been modifying their health plans to increase access to mental health care since the beginning of the pandemic.Companies are also placing a much greater emphasis on taking a proactive rather than a reactive approach toward the issue. In the past, most large- and mid-sized companies had Employee Assis tance Programmes (EAP), provid ing access to hotlines and coun sellors for staff members in need. However, usage rates were often low. Many employees did not even realise such programmes existed. In India, there was a noticeaThe most enlightened companies understand that employee well-being is something they have a responsibility to focus on. But they also know that it will benefit their bottom line too

Happier employees are more productive ones. They will also be healthier since anxiety and depression boost the risk of many chronic and life-threatening conditions from diabetes to cardiovascular disease

About the Author ble shift during the second wave of the pandemic in April and May 2021. Companies reached out to their employees to support them through the crisis and employees turned to their companies for information and help. As we come out on the other side of the pandemic, many companies have kept this good work up. They are now being far more proactive about highlight ing the mental health and wellbeing services they offer and are actively destigmatising the issue.


82 | August 2022

Si Gal atz M on is the Founder and CEO at Medix Global.

Words such as “mental health disorders” are out. Instead, companies emphasise how every one can improve their well-being no matter how happy they think they are, to begin theireducationalresponsiblethischampionsNewly-appointedwith.well-beingaretheconduitsforevolvingstrategy.Theyarefordisseminatingmaterialsthroughcompany’sinternalcommunicationchannels.Theyorganiseeventsandworkshopsteachingresilienceandthepowerofpositivitysothatemployeeshavethetoolstotakecontroloftheirhealthandwell-being.Mostimportantlyofall,however,theyareforginganeco-system,whichisembeddingmentalhealthandwell-beingdeepintotheircompanyanditsculture.Morecompaniesarealsotrainingdepartmentheadssothattheycandifferentiatebetweengoodandbadstressamongtheirteammembers.Educationalmaterialscanonlydosomuch.Ultimately,companiesneedmanagerswithbetterEQskills,attunedtofarmorethanjustoutput.Overthepastyear,noareaoflifehasundergoneaswiftertransformationthanthewaythatwework.Employeeexpectationshaveshifted.Companiesthatwanttothriveareactivelyredefiningtheircorporateculturesandwhatproductivitymeansinawiderandmoreprogressivesense.Mentalhealthandwell-beingarefastrisingonmanycorporateagendas.Itiswheretheywillstay.


83August 2022 |Know More

Matters' Digital Platforms Engaging 300K+ talent professionals in Asia daily Know More RNI Details: Vol. XIII, Issue No. 8, R.N.I. No. HARENG/2010/33504. Published and Owned by People Matters Publishing Pvt. Ltd. Published at 501, 5th Floor, Millennium Plaza, Tower A, Sushant Lok-1, Sector-27, Gurgaon - 122009, Haryana. Editor: Esther Martinez Hernandez

Articles inside

Blogosphere article cover image


pages 80-83
Cognizant article cover image


page 63
What's next for talent mobility? article cover image

What's next for talent mobility?

pages 50-52
Quick Reads article cover image

Quick Reads

pages 10-14
'Role Revision': HR leaders need to be stewards of company culture article cover image

'Role Revision': HR leaders need to be stewards of company culture

pages 39-41
the roAd less trAvelled article cover image

the roAd less trAvelled

pages 72-77
Infosys article cover image


page 61
Technology, automation, and the metaverse will build new careers article cover image

Technology, automation, and the metaverse will build new careers

pages 42-44
Expleo article cover image


page 66
l e A dersh I p article cover image

l e A dersh I p

pages 30-35
Rapid Fire article cover image

Rapid Fire

pages 15-25
Tech Mahindra Limited article cover image

Tech Mahindra Limited

page 65
Genpact article cover image


page 57
t ech hr article cover image

t ech hr

pages 26-29
l e A dersh I p article cover image

l e A dersh I p

pages 68-71
Wipro article cover image


page 60
Rockwell Automation Pvt. Ltd article cover image

Rockwell Automation Pvt. Ltd

page 67
Maxlife Insurance article cover image

Maxlife Insurance

page 59
Why leadership needs upskilling for climate change article cover image

Why leadership needs upskilling for climate change

pages 36-38
Knowledge + Networking article cover image

Knowledge + Networking

pages 78-79
'We are all living in the age of chaos' article cover image

'We are all living in the age of chaos'

pages 45-47
Juniper article cover image


page 58
Zomato article cover image


page 62
Letters of the month article cover image

Letters of the month

pages 8-9
Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd article cover image

Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd

page 64
The war for talent and the future of work article cover image

The war for talent and the future of work

pages 53-56