In the previous two chapters, we discussed the two main dynamics shaping future organizations and leadership, and examined System Waves and Generations. From this point of view, we aimed to better understand the spirit of the time from the perspective of systems and workers. When we look at the disruptive elements of business life, we can summarize them as follows under two main headings: the challenges of the system and the expectations of employees.
Forced by the system:
- SUSTAINABILITY Human sustainability and advances in health
- SUSTAINABILITY: Sustainability of the environment (resource depletion) and developments in environmental technologies
- Demographic changes (migrations, increasing diversity in race, age, gender, generation…)
- Technology-Digitalization – Personalized models (management of big data)
- Disintegration of the balance of power and new capitalist understanding
What employees expect:
- Awareness of being part of the whole, the search for meaning and self-realization
- Ethical work and corporate citizenship in line with human values
- Demand for happiness, authenticity, flexibility and different working models
- A new understanding of leadership that is virtuous, sincere, wise, servant and spiritual
Competencies required by new business models:
- Technical competencies that can meet the need for instant development of technical skill sets (due to increasing investments in automation and artificial intelligence, an increase in technology that complements, not replaces, human beings)
- High cognitive flexibility, including problem solving and critical thinking.
- Adding cognitive flexibility (the ability to adapt to specific situations, the ability to shift from one thought to another, or the capacity to approach different problems with multi-faceted strategies) to the set of competencies required.
As can be understood from the above summary, the current fifth wave and the future new wave impose new learning organizational structures on companies. With its non-hierarchical, low-bureaucracy and in-house cell models, Gig’s (Gig is a word that comes from the music industry; it’s a term used for musicians who take short-term jobs and perform on stage. A new economic model created by freelancers.), based on different forms of collaboration(temporary, part-time, independent working models), problem- and solution-oriented structures are becoming more prominent in today’s organizational structures. With the effect of the pandemic, flexible working models are one of the models preferred by companies compared to the classical working system working in the office. Studies show that the number of people leaving the workforce and returning to contribute to organizations/works from outside the organization is increasing all over the world. With the increase of these structures, there is a need to reconstruct the working models of large organizations. In addition, internal diversity, equality and inclusion are also areas that organizations need to work on and gain competence in.
As a sub-heading of systemic and human dynamics, when the challenges of the system and the expectations of employees come together, the need for change in organizational structures emerges. Companies that used to define success in terms of EBITDA values today still define EBITDA as a success criterion, but in addition to this, they define their success on different scales. Nobel Prize-winning economist Muhammad Yunus uses the concept of social enterprises to describe changing organizations and states that “loss-making” companies will have a greater presence in the business world. Whereas in the past, organizations were seen as profit or benefit oriented, this new field includes social impacts. Governments are also adjusting their regulations to support loss-making organizations (An example of such regulation is the definition of new legislation for social enterprises in the state of Vermont in the United States for this new purpose).
The developmental service-oriented leader of the fifth wave, the facilitators who “serve the whole of society” and who “raise the aspirations of their employees to be the best they can be” in the broadest definition of the word ‘influence’ by presenting virtue, kindness, integrity, teamwork, meaning-making, harmony and cohesion as role models, are thought to be the adjectives of the leadership of the future, by whatever name it is called. As can be seen, the reactivity of the 19th century gives way to proactivity in the 20th century and to “co-activity” in the 21st century. This period will lead to a period of thinking together, producing together, working together and managing together, while understanding the context correctly and improving and developing it.