What we deem to be “the future” of work is constantly shifting, for obvious reasons. But if the last few years are any indication, work is becoming more than a job for many professionals (and not just millennials). Organizations are evolving to support a wider variety of work styles, leadership styles, and, slowly but surely, diverse thoughts and ideas.
Simultaneously, more and more knowledge workers find themselves stressed and burned out. While many have touted a focus on “work-life balance,” the rise of remote workers and technological advancements have ushered in a much more integrated approach of “work-life blend.” Still, navigating the world of work remains tricky for both leaders and organizations.
Reconciling these sometimes conflicting priorities and challenges isn’t going to be easy. But as more progressive organizations begin to embrace a Whole Person approach to development, recognizing that work and well-being are intertwined, the leaders of today and the future will be better equipped to handle new challenges and periods of professional and personal transition.
Together with our team of experts, we’ve compiled a list of the seven workplace trends we predict will be big in 2018.
Inclusion will become a core management skill
Traditional diversity initiatives in organizations seek to include a wide range of groups inside the organization, and make hiring decisions with that in mind. But there’s an alternative model for building a diverse organization: creating an inclusive organizational culture.
According to Deloitte’s Stacia Sherman Garr, Candace Atamanik and Dani Johnson, organizations that deliberately foster inclusive talent systems are two times as likely to be innovative and agile, and four times more likely to effectively manage performance. Speaking onstage at Impact, a Deloitte-sponsored human resources conference, Garr, Atamanik, and Johnson identified a set of four components for building an inclusive culture: value and belonging, safety and a sense of openness, respect and equality, and empowerment and the ability to grow. As entrepreneur, coach, teacher, and investor, Fern Mandelbaum so aptly stated, “Diversity for diversity’s sake doesn’t help anyone. What we should really be striving for is a culture that isn’t just diverse, but inclusive of diverse points of view, backgrounds, and experiences.”
In 2018, inclusive leadership won’t just be something we’ll see from exceptionally progressive companies, but at organizations across industries, at every level of management as simply a way of “being.”