Maulik Parekh, entrepreneur, serial angel investor, speaker, and author, tackled the disruptive forces that not only businesses but also individuals have to face. In his new book, “Future Proof Your Company and Career,” he discussed three of the most-talked-about factors that are changing the workforce landscape: artificial intelligence (AI), the gig economy, and digital natives.
Parekh said the COVID-19 pandemic fast-tracked the digital transformation of many companies and what was once thought impossible by management is not a reality. He cited the call center or business process and outsourcing (BPOs) which only a year ago, the work from home setup would have been unimaginable.
But technologies like AI, which is often used for automation, can now create solutions that would allow remote work.
“Companies had to very quickly figure out how to support this hybrid model where only part of their employees will come to the workplace and then the remaining would continue to work from home,” Parekh said.
For companies to see AI as a solution and not an enemy that would cost people jobs, Parekh said that leaders need to figure out how to partner with AI. Instead of being afraid of AI or try to deny its presence, organizations need to identify some of the skills that would complement the technology or what are the available skills that would help individuals need to improve on so they can work with the technology and not against it.
As disruptive as the forces can be, Parekh said legacy companies can still take pride in their long history but they need to pivot and adopt a mindset that is agile and nimble.
“If you are a Goliath with a 200-year-old history and you are extremely stable but very hard to maneuver, then it’s not a strength anymore for you,” Parekh said. “It becomes a weakness.”
The startup mindset of incessant innovations is the kind of reframing many companies need to realize. What was once stable can be disrupted easily. This also affects human resources as well.
“Employees are looking for companies where the CEO is not the only one making the decision,” Parekh said. “They’re looking for companies where every employee has a say in what happens in that company. So it is such an important thing for even the traditional companies to do. Even the traditional companies would have to make that shift going forward.”
“In the last 10 years alone, we have witnessed mighty giants – niche leaders in their own categories – all but extinct. They chose not to be resilient. They chose not to evolve, adapt, and change to the new paradigm, new environment, new competition. To claim the future, you must evolve multidimensionally. You must evolve holistically. The disruption is accelerating. Only the most agile will thrive.” Maulik said.
“Future Proof Your Company and Career” is available at Amazon.
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