Talents and Capabilities for the Organization of the Future

It’s not long now until our annual European Organisation Design Forum Conference. I’m looking forward to connecting, exchanging and getting inspired.


One of the topics on the radar for the conference is


reprioritising the talent landscape and future capability requirements


I’m wearing my two hats (HR and organization design) and wondering what talents and capabilities we will need in the future. Three that come to mind are:


  • Leveraging diverse abilities
  • (Leadership) team collaboration
  • Bringing values to life


Although these skills are already important, let's take a look at why they might be even more valuable in future.


1. Leveraging diverse abilities


I’ve noticed companies trying to build their organizations and ways of working for more collaboration, aiming to bring together diverse abilities to improve innovation. However, diversity alone doesn't always improve team effectiveness. To be successful, we need the capability to work in ways where everyone contributes their unique perspectives. With the trend towards working in networks and ecosystems, I think this will be one of the most important capacities to develop for the future.


Perhaps this is why the OECD Education 2030 Project names reconciling tensions and dilemmas as a transformative competency.


Striking a balance between competing demands will rarely lead to an either/or choice or even a single solution. Individuals will need to think in a more integrated way that avoids premature conclusions and recognises interconnections. OECD Education 2030 Project


Although this wording suggests that diverse perspectives are a challenge to overcome, I prefer to think about the opportunity to leverage diversity as an advantage.


2. (Leadership) team collaboration


In my experience, senior leadership teams collaborate less than teams of individual contributors. Just to be clear, they co-ordinate, align and constructively negotiate, usually very effectively. However, some leadership teams rarely if ever work together on big, complex problems. Rather, they focus their energy in delivering their own targets, trusting that if all perform well individually, the whole company will succeed. This article The symphonic C-suite came to some similar conclusions about top management teams.


73 percent of respondents told us that their C-suite leaders rarely, if ever, work together on projects or strategic initiatives.
Respondents from organizations where C-suite execs regularly collaborate on long-term interdependent work were the most likely to anticipate growth of 10 percent or more.
Deloitte 2018 Human Capital Trends, The symphonic C-suite


I'm convinced that organizations have a role to play in solving increasingly complex problems in future, especially if leadership teams make an impact through exceptional team collaboration.


3. Bringing values to life


It seems to me that people are placing more and more importance on companies’ values. Including me! I’m dreaming of a future where organizations design their values into their systems and practices. That means people who are building technology and processes must have the capability to integrate values into the design. That's why one of our pre-conference workshops is on bringing values to life in technology enabled organisations, which I'm co-facilitating.


With workshops, interactive open sessions and keynotes from senior leaders, I'm sure we will learn more about talent landscape and future capability requirements at the EODF Conference. Hope to see you there!


If you are interested in the future of organizations, consider joining EODF to learn more and get to know our brilliant community.

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