Learn how to be an inclusive leader in a diverse, complex and changing business environment.

Future-proofing your Workforce: What it takes

Future Proofing Workforce Last week I attended the NEEOPA ‘Future of Work’ Masterclass, led by Katrina North from EY and Carmel Court at EML. The session addressed critical questions we are seeing many of our clients being challenged by:

“What leadership skills do we expect our leaders will need to deal with the anticipated ‘future of work’ challenges?

What populations do we need to think of in the future?

What challenges will face our existing employees if they are displaced due to automation and increased contingent working?

Two areas we focus on at Beasley Intercultural – developing resilience through change, and inclusive leadership – are critical capabilities.

The future workplace is:

  • Different: It won’t look, feel or operate like workplaces today
  • Everywhere: It will include offshore, contingent (project based) and flexible or home based workers
  • Everything: We won’t simply rely on humans, Artificial Intelligence (AI), digital capability and smart machines will augment our daily work
  • Now: Change is already underway, and there is urgency around supporting this transition, for leaders, and for the workforces they lead.

This transition will not be easy for all, and job security will be an issue for many people. Without due focus and planning, there is the potential to leave many people behind. Research from Oxford University, has identified a number of occupations which will be fully automated in the not too distant future. All of these jobs are based on a predictable pattern of repetitive activities which machine learning algorithms and AI can perform with greater speed, accuracy and at a lower cost.

The World Economic Forum recently defined the top 10 skills needed to navigate this monumental shift in the economy and explored how humans will create value in an increasingly automated world. The emphasis is strongly on ‘the human touch’, what has been traditionally deemed ‘soft’ skills. High level thinking and interpersonal skills are what’s required.

Leaders not only need to role model the behaviours needed for the future workforce, they need to have the capacity to develop and drive strategic organisational change while bringing people with them. Inclusive leadership will be critical. The ability to bring people together, think long term and negotiate solutions to complex and important future questions will define not only the future of our businesses, our economy, but also our planet.

Some of the key skills required by leaders of the future include:

Digital literacy – Leaders don’t need to be programmers or IT specialists but do need to know what questions to ask, and of whom. There’s a risk that important business and operational strategy will be driven by the Chief Information Officer and IT department, rather than the entire leadership team if leaders don’t have digital literacy.

Humility – Leaders won’t know everything. They will need to have the capacity to access and synthesise diverse perspectives rather than depending on ‘gut instinct’ based on their lived experience of the way the world was in the environment they grew up in. Global mindset, and the capacity to engage with and address the needs of diverse communities will be business critical.

Inclusion – Leaders will need to ensure their managers have the capabilities required to fully access and leverage the talents of everyone in a diverse and distributed workforce. It’s not enough to have a strategic or intellectual understanding of diversity at the top of the organisations. Managers and leaders need to practice inclusion in their behaviour: the capacity to understand diverse perspectives, maximise participation in meetings and information sharing in global and virtual teams, and deliver results.

Resilience – Change can be hard. Resilience is required to cope with constant change and ambiguity. Keeping staff motivated and engaged through complex change and work reallocation is rarely easy. Strong communication skills will be required from leaders to guide a workforce through change.

It is essential to prepare and support our current and next generation of leaders. A growth mindset and lifelong learning will ensure we can support the inclusive leadership skills required to succeed. The good news is, this is possible! We have a responsibility to not only ‘tell’ leaders the behaviours and capabilities they need, we need to support their development. Leadership coaching, training and advisory services can make a difference to daily team performance. As a recent participant on our Inclusive Leadership program said in their program feedback:

Applying my new learning on inclusive leadership – It worked! There was greater team participation and contribution. People were noticeably more open and more willing to share. I saw improved morale and greater diversity of thinking within the team.

Resilience through Change’ is also available in the suite of training programs from Beasley Intercultural. This course can empower your workforce to navigate the change process and be more resilient – for greater wellbeing and productivity.

Contact us now to future proof your workforce.

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China, digital transformation, Inclusive Leadership and Global Teams

Earlier this month I worked with clients in Shanghai and Beijing, delivering ‘Inclusive Leadership: Global Teams’ programs. Every time I return to China, something is new; construction, digital apps, and ways of doing things. The appetite for development and progress, coupled with the speed of change, never ceases to be surprising.  What struck me most on this visit was the extraordinary level of digital integration of the economy and how people from all walks of life, and in all elements of their personal and professional lives have so fully engaged in this process. China is rapidly moving to a cashless economy. WeChat is the ‘hub’ for daily life, not only for personal and business communications but also for payments – whether it is paying for noodles at a roadside stall, transport, or buying groceries.

While I was in China, I met with my clients in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, and through a series of workshops we explored the differences and similarities between offices, remote teams and regions. We discussed channels and methods of communication, and how being an inclusive leader enables their teams to be more effective, build trust and relationships and minimise misunderstandings. We worked though how to communicate across multiple teams and locations to ensure information was shared and, most importantly, universally understood. At the conclusion of the workshops, we built a team communication charter. This charter will enable leaders to apply the models, skills, and knowledge they have learned to build capability, inclusiveness and, most importantly, trusting relationships across the room and across the country.

All of our clients around the world are going through some level of digital transformation, and there is a greater focus on global and virtual team collaboration. At Beasley Intercultural we are using new technologies to deliver learning programs, coaching and advisory services globally, and we too have adjusted the way we communicate and deliver our services. For example, this week I co-facilitated with Matilda, one of our lead consultants in Canberra, to a group in Rome, in an interactive group coaching session. With another client, I facilitated a masterclass, from Sydney with participants in six different countries as part of their six week global mobility preparation program. Each participant will be relocating to a new country and workplace in a few weeks, and we’ll continue the learning journey with them once they arrive.

Such engagement is now a normal part of how we work. In adjusting to this ‘new normal’ – there are some skills required. Even with these huge technological advances and new ways of interacting, issues and challenges effectively communicating across diverse teams and locations still exist. How do you work with people you never see face to face? How can you ensure others ‘get’ the urgency of your requests? How do you ensure ‘buy in’ and commitment?

The most rewarding part of our work in the past couple of weeks has been seeing the relief among participants when they realise that the struggles and challenges they are facing are normal. Once patterns can been recognised, it’s then possible to apply key models, tips and techniques to minimise misunderstandings, build trust, and enable better collaboration. A lot of people will now benefit from working with less frustration in a more productive workplace!

Beasley Intercultural regularly delivers Inclusive Leadership workshops, master-classes and executive briefings to clients in Australia, Asia and around the world.  If you would like to know more please contact us.

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Beasley Intercultural

Build capability, raise cultural awareness and develop a global mindset

For over 20 years, we’ve delivered transformational cross-cultural training to more than 15,000 people around the world.

Whether you’re in business, government or an international agency, our programs, advisory services  and executive coaching can support you and your team to build capability, raise cultural awareness and develop a global mindset.

Clients & Results

See our clients and results

Beasley Intercultural Autumn 2018 Update

Welcome to our Autumn update on the exciting challenges, opportunities and events at Beasley Intercultural.

We are seeing a constant state of change in many workplaces with globalisation, digital transformation, M&A’s and shifting demographics just some of the causes.  To survive and thrive, resilience needs to be developed and nurtured. Our ‘Resilience through Change’ program has been very popular lately, delivering terrific results to empower employees to navigate the change process.

Beasley Intercultural hosted a table at the International Women’s day breakfast in Sydney in March.  We are currently doing a large body of work on developing a suite of high-quality gender training programs. It’s so important we understand how to take a nuanced approach to gender issues.  The UN breakfast highlighted how women are disproportionately impacted by disaster, crisis and conflict. For example, Women are 14 times more likely to die in a natural disaster. It was so inspiring to hear from Iba Qasas, Chief Crisis Prevention, Preparedness and Response at UN Women, and learn about the efforts of the UN to ensure ‘No Woman is Left Behind’. A great event, however, on the gender front, as many members of our team are working women with families and doing the morning ‘drop off’ juggle, we are hoping for a lunch instead next year!

I was recently interviewed for a new podcast by James Judge, Associate Publisher at The Mandarin. The  discussion focused on how to ensure inclusion for performance – an essential element of diverse, global workplaces.   We also talked about blind recruiting, cross-cultural management, glass and bamboo ceilings, and what it takes to address unconscious bias. Listen

The state of New South Wales has one of the most culturally diverse communities in the world with 27.6% of the population born overseas. In March, we were delighted to attend the huge Harmony Day celebration hosted by the NSW Premier. The dinner celebrates and recognises people who support multicultural community organisations. Congratulations to those people recognised for making a positive difference to the lives of so many others.  More

ASEAN-Australia Special Summit 2018: Australia was host to the ASEAN Summit in April and I had the honour of MC’ing one of the key business events. There was a high profile line up of experts from diverse industry, government and business backgrounds including Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Singaporean Prime Minister, H.E. Lee Hsien Loong.  The event offered a unique opportunity for Australian  enterprises to network and share their knowledge and insights on engaging in our region.

In February, Beasley Intercultural Consultants attended a briefing on the progress of the Australian Modern Slavery Act at Parliament House, Canberra.  An Australian Modern Slavery Act (similar to legislation in the UK) will require the business community to review the existence of slavery within their supply chains. This is an important development, and will require an understanding of the connectedness of supply chains throughout the world, and a commitment to doing the right thing. We’re watching with interest, and hoping the new legislation will be supported by a strong push for capability development. What Australian business needs to know

We have had a very busy kick off to 2018 with our facilitator led training courses. The most popular programs continue to be Cultural Capability, Addressing Unconscious Bias and Inclusive Leadership.

As always, our team are travelling a lot, and also delivering our blended programs to clients around the world using our online delivery and eLearning.  We currently have participants in more than fifteen countries in our Inclusive Leadership Program.

It’s great to connect remotely, but we always enjoy it when we have the opportunity to share a meal and catch up in person. It was wonderful to travel and work with clients in China and Thailand last week, who had travelled from around the world to be there.

We hope all’s well in your world.

Best regards

Tamerlaine and the Beasley Intercultural Team

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Responding to a ‘Digitalising, Deglobalising, Post-Truth World’

Recently I was invited as one of 150 leaders to participate in the Crawford Leadership Forum, “Global Realities, Domestic Choices: Responding to a Digitalising, Deglobalising, Post-truth world.”

The forum was a jam-packed 48 hours of discussion on the themes which are shaping our world and the implications for the organisations we lead, particularly focussing on appropriate public policy responses to some of the most difficult economic, security and social problems facing the world in general, and Australia in particular.

Some highlights for me were discussions with:

  • Parag Khanna. Global Futurist. His book ‘Connectography’ is a must read for any leader working across borders.
  • Linda Jakobsen. China Specialist. Her latest book ‘China Matters’ essential reading for Australians engaging in the region.
  • Peter Yu, CEO, Yawuru, one of the largest cattle stations in northern Australia owned and managed by traditional land owners.
  • George Yeo, Former Singaporean Foreign Minister talking about how Singapore manages relationships with China and what Australia could learn.

Some of the extraordinary speakers and participants included Helen Clarke, former NZ PM who spoke of her run for UN Secretary General; and Australian Senator Penny Wong and Laura Tingle, Journalist and Author, discussing the future and what they see as Australia’s role in this new global marketplace.

One of the key themes which emerged from almost all sessions was the radical disruption occurring in our workplaces – the impact of Artificial Intelligence, globalisation of supply chain, global labour mobility, and a reshaping of the world’s power and economic power relationships.

I was struck by the extent to which Inclusive Leadership – leadership which is adaptive, agile, and taps into the diversity of globally connected and diverse workforces – is radically increasing in importance.

Late last year I wrote about our Inclusive Leadership Program and some of the feedback participants shared with us about their experiences, expectations and what they will now do differently as a result of their learning.

Videos and resources from the 2017 Crawford Forum are now publicly available.

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Building Cultural Capability – What works?

Do you know how to build cultural capability in your organisation?

Cultural capability is an increasingly important skill to enable high performance workplaces. It ensures people at all levels of the organisation communicate effectively, engage respectfully, and collaborate for results.

Culture is not limited to a ‘country’ culture defined by lines on a map. Culture is ‘the way we do things around here’ and consists of learned behaviours and norms shared in a group.

So, what works?

After more than twenty years and supporting thousands of people to develop their skills, we know the pitfalls to avoid. We understand the challenges of negotiating difference, ensuring alignment and driving performance.  Most importantly, we know does work and why.

In order to successfully develop cultural capability across your workforce, training programs and advisory services must be relevant for the context – the type of organisation, the level of seniority and the experience of participants.  Cultural capability development needs to be embedded and supported across the entire organisation.

Where to focus your efforts?

Inclusive recruitment, HR & Onboarding practices:

  • Company PR & marketing teams trained in cross-cultural communication, ensure advertising and company online presence represents a diversity of faces,
  • HR staff trained in cultural capability & mitigating unconscious use inclusive and fair selection processes to ensure hiring based on talent
  • Induction programs develop a ‘shared language’ and baseline foundation understanding of the cultural capability
  • Employee networks and diversity and inclusion strategy built into business strategy

Management and Leadership Development

  • Inclusive Leadership programs ensure leaders know how to access and leverage the breadth of talent in their teams
  • Country-focused programs prepare staff to ‘hit the ground running’ when working with colleagues or clients in new geographies
  • Leadership Masterclasses ensure critical cultural know-how for global M&A, negotiations, global project and JV management, leading diverse teams
  • Resilience and change management when transitioning teams, relocating and leading in complex environments

Strategic support

  • Access expert coaching for leaders stepping into an Asia-Pac role
  • Seek specialist advice for new initiatives – globalising business models, balancing the need for localisation with consistent business practice across borders
  • Use professional facilitation for global or regional strategy meetings, conferences and events

To celebrate 20 years of Beasley Intercultural we’ll be holding events in Sydney and Canberra, sharing lessons learned and strategies to build cultural capability in your organisation.

To book your Canberra tickets on 20 September 2017 click here.

To book your Sydney tickets on 17 October 2017 click here.

Beasley Intercultural

Build capability, raise cultural awareness and develop a global mindset

For over 20 years, we’ve delivered transformational cross-cultural training to more than 15,000 people around the world.

Whether you’re in business, government or an international agency, our programs, advisory services  and executive coaching can support you and your team to build capability, raise cultural awareness and develop a global mindset.

Clients & Results

See our clients and results

Leading Asia-Pacific Teams: What works?

It’s cherry blossom season in Tokyo, and I’m here delivering a program on Global Mindset for Asia-Pacific Leaders. This group of leaders have thousands of staff across the region and I am reflecting on the challenges they face. The challenge of creating and maintaining a truly global business, while meeting the needs of, and adapting to local cultures. It’s not an easy task.

One of the biggest challenges of working in Asia as a leader, and a ‘boss’, is that in this context, hierarchy is everything, and unless you can ‘read the air’ as it’s described in Japan, it’s hard to know what’s going on, and can be even harder to influence and get results.

How do you access critical information when meetings are often about displays of harmony and you are treated as an honoured guest? How can you get feedback on your ideas if no one would dare disagree with you publicly? How do know what’s real and who to trust? It’s so tempting to trust the person in the room with the best English or the person who knows how to engage with you in a way you are accustomed to.

So what works?

  1. Access reliable information about the local context – get beyond the surface. Learn about local communication preferences and adapt your style as necessary. For example, often the most useful information is conveyed over lunch or en-route to the car.
  2. Build a sense of team. Your local team are the key to your success. What are you doing to give them the greatest capability to deliver? How are you ensuring you hear what they really think and say? Alignment, engagement and motivation are critical.
  3. Be clear on your role and what you bring. Your ability to lead successfully depends on your capacity to align local capability with the broader company vision and goals. You often have a better sense of the bigger global picture, and cross-company networks and insights.
  4. Have a clear sense of your company values and history and make this explicit – who you are, and what you stand for. Look for ways of engaging with local partners and causes which align with your vision and values.
  5. Regulators, government and community matter far more than you might think in most Asian countries. If you get those relationships right, your business will be more successful. Your brand and what you stand for are often best communicated through your commitment to community. What potential do you have to add value?
  6. Build relationships of trust. People will talk truth to power, but only if there is trust. Make an investment of time in relationships, in listening to understand, and demonstrating commitment.
  7. Be curious and open. Show humility. You will never stop learning, and you will sometimes get it wrong. Anyone who has ever succeeded has failed too. Pace yourself, you will need to be resilient and persist.
  8. Know what is at your centre. You will be challenged and sometimes doubt yourself, or the job you are trying to do. Consistency is as important as adaptation. A sense of stability, continuity and purpose will make a difference to your ability to cope, and to lead.

Sounds easy, right?! As with anything, the challenge is all in the doing. Engagement starts with a single step, and it’s all about getting to know people and their world. So, start now. Be curious. Ask an open question, and sit back and listen. Watch the magic happen.

Contact us to find out more about our Global Teams and Inclusive Leadership programs.

Beasley Intercultural

Build capability, raise cultural awareness and develop a global mindset

For over 20 years, we’ve delivered transformational cross-cultural training to more than 15,000 people around the world.

Whether you’re in business, government or an international agency, our programs, advisory services  and executive coaching can support you and your team to build capability, raise cultural awareness and develop a global mindset.

Clients & Results

See our clients and results

The Business Case for Customer Diversity

‘Whether it’s your customers or your workforce, respecting diversity and treating people inclusively is the right thing to do, plain and simple. It’s also the smart thing to do, because if you’re appealing to the widest range of people, you’re strengthening your ability to grow, attract the best talent and innovate.’  

Alan Joyce, CEO, Qantas

A report released today ‘Missing Out: The business case for customer diversity’ by Deloitte and the Australian Human Rights Commission highlights significant unmet customer needs in diverse communities.

Stereotyping, unconscious bias, and lack of awareness are leading to experiences of exclusion for customers. Customers are more powerful than ever before, and prefer to buy from organisations which treat them respectfully and fairly, and openly support diversity.

Less than half of the people surveyed believed organisations treat customers respectfully, regardless of their personal characteristics. As Australians, we live in a country where one in five people speaks a language other than English at home, 18% of people have a disability, 11% of people identify as LGBTI.

Diversity is not just ‘something HR manages’. Understanding the diversity of the Australian community is about accessing and servicing the broader client base, and about better business results.

What’s needed is to build capability for tangible change. A first step is to build cultural awareness, take concrete steps to minimise the impact of unconscious bias, and develop inclusive leadership. These measures are all required to better understand and service diverse customers.

Accessing the $190bn Multicultural Market – what works?

The expert panel chaired by Hakan Harman, CEO Multicultural NSW

Did you know one in five Australians speak a language other than English at home? And yet so much of our advertising and marketing is not reaching this $190 billion market. Inclusion is core business, and getting it right makes a difference to employee engagement, performance and the bottom line.

Last night I attended the Australian Multicultural Awards at the Sydney Opera House. It’s been wonderful, as an adviser to Multicultural NSW, to see the evolution of this event, and great to see the business case so clearly articulated. I think Geraldine Chin Moody from Virgin Australia summed it up so succinctly:

“Success is when we don’t talk about diversity any more and we talk about inclusion. It shouldn’t matter who you are – it’s what you have to contribute”

As Geraldine emphasised, inclusion is so important for effectively accessing, managing and leveraging diversity. Virgin took an

With Huss Mustafa and Malini Raj, Multicultural Community Banking at Commonwealth Bank

internal employee-driven approach to their diversity campaign. The good news is, Virgin are reflecting this principle in their advertising. What a great campaign ‘Together we fly’.

As we highlight in our successful, global, Inclusive Leadership program, inclusion takes effort, focus and a commitment from leaders. Get in touch if you’d like to enable a more inclusive culture in your organisation.

Leading for Inclusion

20160521_ozworks__0105-copyIt seems an opportune time to reflect on what leading for inclusion actually looks like. Inclusive leaders involve everyone, not only the people like them, the people they feel comfortable with, or the people who they find the least challenging.

To lead inclusively is not always easy. It requires stretching to the edge of your comfort zone, working with people who may have different preferences, different ways of seeing the world, and of living their lives.

As demonstrated so clearly in the US election process, it’s all too easy to neglect people whose voices are less accessible. It’s easy to ignore those with less power or privilege, or those who are different to you. We all have a responsibility to contribute to an environment of tolerance and respect, to overcome our differences and seek to find common ground.

Leaders have a responsibility to set the tone, to call-out behaviour which isn’t appropriate, and to create a vision of the future.

To lead inclusively in our businesses and our organisations means we need to ensure everyone has a sense of belonging. We need to ensure staff can bring their whole selves, all of their talents, their experience and their best intentions to the task at hand.

Beasley Intercultural Inclusive Leadership programs are now being delivered to participants in more than 15 countries around the globe. Click here for more information.

Do Australian leaders have what it takes?

Prof Peter GahanA major new report ‘Leadership at Work – Do Australian leaders have what it takes?’ has just been released by the Centre for Workplace Leadership, the largest ever survey of leadership in Australia. The findings are sobering. Most organisations do not have the leadership required to survive and thrive in the 21st century.  It was really interesting to attend the launch of the report in Sydney and engage in dialogue with members of the Centre for Workplace Leadership team.

What’s happening in Australian organisations:

1.  Australian workplaces are underperforming.

2.  They don’t get the basics of leadership and management right.

3.  Few organisations report high levels of innovation.

4.  Leaders are not well-trained for the job.

5.  There is underinvestment in leadership development, especially at the frontline.

6.  Leadership doesn’t reflect wider social diversity. Australia has an ageing leadership, lacking cultural and gender diversity and with low formal qualifications.

7.  Many senior leaders don’t draw on strategic advice – they don’t access external or diverse perspectives, contributing to a lack of risk awareness and capacity to innovate.

So, for the good news. There is a clear relationship between leadership capability and high performance, and the more training leaders receive, the better their firms perform. There is a correlation between improvements in self efficacy, leadership capability and workplace outcomes.

Key areas for quick wins are:

1.  Get the basics right: Set clear goals and KPI’S, make them visible. Monitor performance, address issues, ensure continuous improvement.

2.  Enable innovation: Build a culture of learning. A growth mindset is critical.

3.  Develop leaders: Ensure leadership development is at frontline levels, not just senior leadership. Access training, coaching and mentoring.

4.  Access strategic advice:  In times of market and competitive pressure and volatility, leaders need help to ‘make sense’ of what’s happening and make informed decisions.

We’re all leading turnaround businesses defined by the realities of complexity, ambiguity and change. Investment in leadership pays dividends.  It is also critical to enable performance.

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