Monthly Archives: July 2016

In Leadership 4.0, Most Bosses Fail

The further the digitalization advances, the larger gets the gap between the wishes of employees and the behavior of the bosses. However, the fast changing technologies require a changing management culture, too.

Principally, the digital transformation makes companies more powerful. But very few use the possibilities. digitalization and Industry 4.0 are a challenge—not only technical but also to the leadership culture. The more frequently this thesis can be heard today, the less it can be ignored or denied. Recently it was confirmed by a study conducted by TNS Infratest on behalf of Microsoft.

More than 1,000 German employees were interviewed. The key results: 85 percent of all addressees want better access to relevant information. Just as many—85 percent—wish to be enabled to take more independent decisions. 84 percent would like to get more regular feedback from their superiors. 71 percent expressed the elementary desire that many associate with the digitalization and the mobile Internet: they want to be able to work more flexible in terms of time and place. And how do they assess the reality? Only about 20 percent said that in times of modern IT they get faster feedbacks or more workplace and time flexibility.

Undoubtedly, the digitalization gives the opportunity to make knowledge more transparent and work more flexible. Yet, the technology advances significantly faster than the change in the minds of managers and executives. Apparently they lack the ability to deliver more responsibility and decision leeway to employees and teams, although those are much closer to the market and have the “ear to the customer”. However, the study does not reveal that the chiefs would no longer be needed. On the contrary. Their role has to change.

In numbers? While 85 percent of all employees want to work more flexible, 60 percent ask for more support from their boss. In short: the ideal manager of today is a coach rather than a controller or commander. In the Infratest study, however, only 41 percent were satisfied with their boss as a coach or mentor. The bottom line is that executives are more in demand than ever, because they need more skills than their employees. Skills to guidance and support. And they need to learn more than their employees. They must learn how to trust.

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Mobile Recruiting. Applicants top, employers flop.

Candidates of today want mobile usable career pages. But very few companies come to meet these needs. This is known, but is confirmed by a recent study with a closer look on the topic.

Written by Jens Kügler

“Skilled workers? No thanks,” said our blog article only two weeks ago. And this week, “Wollmilchsau” (who that is? See next paragraph) publishes a new study. This confirms that candidates and companies are far apart in terms of needs and desires in the application process. About 70 percent of the German population use the mobile Internet today. And constantly grows the number of those who do not only want to google, shop or read football results, but would like to do such practical things like applications, too.

Wollmilchsau? That is a digital agency for personnel marketing and employer branding, roughly translated to English as “jack of all trades”. In the annual edition of its Mobile Recruiting study the agency examined the 160 companies in the German Stock Exchange indexes Dax, TecDAX, MDAX and SDAX in terms of mobile usability of the online sites for career and job. While in 2015 not even half of all these companies offered any optimized candidate sites for mobile devices, the rate increased to 61 percent, according to the current survey. So far so good.

But most of the applicants still have to overcome significant barriers. Only 56 percent of the companies have adapted their job exchange sites for smartpone users. The application forms were only at 31 percent of all responsive. And just about 16 percent of the companies offer social connect options. With social connect, the applicants can link to their Xing or LinkedIn profiles. Instead of filling in long forms and upload documents, they can easily share their personal contact, skills and resume information with a simple fingertip.

Many online career sites facilitate the so-called orientation phase with easily accessible information about companies or positions. But for the application phase and process steps, many of these sites are still miles away from mobile user friendliness. And while these “half ways” appear at about 25 per cent of all companies that offer mobile career pages, in just under five percent it is even reversed: Application form pages wow, orientation pages pooh.

27 percent of companies with mobile-candidate sites are ranked by the agency as pioneers where everything turned out the best satisfaction. However, the largest group are the laggards with great need for improvement: 30 percent. It would be interesting if one could ever find out how many potential candidates get lost for all these companies …

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The Germans: Married to the Job?

This week a study was published. Its topic: The relationship of the Germans to their job. Some figures are quite startling …

Written by Jens Kügler

Some torment keyboards, roll files, move machines or build cars. Others clean offices, drive vans or even save lives. What they all have in common: They are not doing this purely voluntarily. It is their job. And indeed, the Germans seem to take them as serious as the world believes they would do (in many countries, the stereotype of German is hard working and busy).

Bus what does it exactly look like? A personnel services company with the beautiful German name ManpowerGroup wanted to know. In April, they interviewed more than a thousand people and published their study now. What is the “highest result” from this?

68 percent would find their lives boring without a professional job. An exclamation mark. The second one? Colleagues are to some extent “professional family” for 59 percent of all respondents. I remember the chorus line of a hit from the 70’s, sung by a woman: “Then go and marry your office. You love it anyway.” Has nothing changed since then ? Do the Germans live for their work instead of working to make a living?

Not quite. 56 percent put their cross on: “My real life begins after the working hours”. And it sounds almost southern-style relaxed what 52 percent said: If I did not have to work, I would stop tomorrow. Stop tomorrow … well, (I’m curious to see results the study would have revealed when carried out in Spain where is tomorrow means mañana and always really means something like:. “Mañana, I’ll come to fix your faucet,” and, in reality, he comes weeks later. Or never).

After work, 51 percent of all Germans go out with their colleagues every now and then. So are they more loyal to their job than to their family? Or even most loyal to the company? No. At least not all. 38 percent said they could not imagine to remain in the same company for 30 years, even if they liked their job. This is after all a vast difference to daddy’s old days. He still has the pewter plate from his boss and staff hanging on the wall with thanksgiving to 50 years work in the company (and he has always been proud of it).

And finally a last result. For only 29 percent of all respondents, professional matters have always priority. The conclusion: For us Germans, nothing goes without our job. But nothing without the leisure life, too. At the end we Germans are more contradictory than we thought: ordinary people that do not fit into any cliché drawer. Maybe we can be a little bit proud of that.

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