IBM just published its 2012 Global CEO Study: Leading through Connections.
The IBM study shows that CEOs and the companies they manage must constantly evolve to stay competitive. Partners, suppliers, employees and customers want CEOs to communicate with them on a personal level to build trust and to help align them to the organization’s strategy. There is a lot at stake here. ~ Mark Fidelman in Forbes
This report confirms what many of us have been observing, writing about, and trying to put into practice for a decade or more. For example, “They [CEO’s] simply expect unpredictability. For them, there is no “new normal.” This is why perpetual Beta is a constant theme here. It is a necessary perspective in dealing with increasing complexity.
“As CEOs ratchet up the level of openness within their organisations, they are developing collaborative environments where employees are encouraged to speak up, exercise personal initiative, connect with fellow collaborators, and innovate.” An essential part of enabling such an open organization is nurturing net work skills; the abilities needed for individual knowledge creators who are simultaneously collaborative workers.
“Across industries and geographies, CEOs consistently highlight four personal characteristics most critical for employees’ future success: being collaborative, communicative, creative and flexible.” Foundational skills that can foster these characteristics can be developed through personal knowledge management practices supported by social learning structures and emergent work environments.
“As CEOs, we need new ways of running the organisation – or more accurately, we need novel ways of letting the organisation run. ~ Shaun Coffey, Industrial Research Ltd.” Dealing with complexity means a focus on emergent practices, not looking back at best practices, which are already out of date. The “novel way” to run organizations is letting go of command and control and embracing change from both sides.
All CEO’s should have this cartoon by Nina Paley on their office walls.