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Making the grade: What 25 years in business could teach us about the next 25

By 13th December 2021Blog
Classmates Graduation

25 years. That’s how long we’ve been partnering with some of the world’s leading organisations and accumulating insights on how best to drive up employee engagement.

As Axiom’s landmark year closes, what better time to reflect on how these learnings help us prepare for what might come next in the world of effective leadership and communication.

25 years in business generates far too many insights for a single article, so here we share three crucial ones, which we believe can help any organisation looking to successfully navigate the next 25 years.

1. Change is constant, but the pace is quickening

We’re accustomed to change but digital is accelerating the pace.

Today’s wealth of data (and ease of access to it) would have seemed like sci-fi from your dial up internet connection 25 years ago.

Yet digital is still in its infancy, and advances like AI and quantum computing will morph pacy into racy.

Simply having or hoarding information offers no advantage.

Distilling insight from the deluge, succinctly communicating it and swiftly acting upon it is what will distinguish the driftwood from those who do good in the years ahead.

Our role, as leaders and communicators, must surely be to share and explain the potential benefits that such technologies will bring to the world of work and help equip colleagues to embrace, not fear, these advances.

2. Blurry boundaries are blurring further

Tech has enabled leaders to work at any time from almost anywhere for years, but the pandemic has ripped off the sticking plaster separating work from home, real and virtual world, for workforces worldwide.

Stunning smart solutions show no signs of slowing. For example, the virtual event technology that we harness today provides a genuine alternative to flying people around the world, hiring large venues and booking hotels, while simultaneously saving tons of carbon emissions and thousands of budget dollars in the process.

There’s no doubt fully virtual or hybrid events are here to stay, which means so too are remote teams. Whether your team’s boundaries are blurred across county, country or continent, digital savviness is no longer a superpower but a staple.

Yet as tech continues to evolve as an exciting enabler, what remains the critical constant is the need to engage others.

Digital can enable and augment an experience, but it only becomes powerful when coupled with clear, concise and compelling communication that connects with people – regardless of where they are based.

As leaders and communicators, going forwards we must take the best practices from the ‘old world’ and add them to the opportunities presented in the ‘new world’ to help the organisations we serve make well informed and wise decisions

3. Mindset has never mattered more

Perhaps it’s an inevitable result of the increasing pace of change, the blurring of boundaries, changing demographics and rise of new and disruptive technologies that our mindset, the way we think about our work and those we work with has never mattered more.

Today’s world of work is too complex and fast-moving for any one person to have all the answers. Those who hit full steam are those who convene curious and cognitively diverse teams. They do so around a compelling vision that brings purpose to work and meaning to individual contributions.

Creating a psychologically safe environment and ways of working is the unlock to successful collaborations both now and in the future. This matters because we already know what we did today won’t get us to where we need to be tomorrow, and none of us alone hold the key to get to where we’ll need be.

A growth mindset, with a thirst for lifelong learning, together with the humility and agility to listen and learn from others who don’t always look, sound, think or act like us is foundational for future success.

And while digital both contributes to and offers answers to the business complexity that awaits us, it’s the human skills of connecting, consolidating, collaborating and communicating that has, and always will, determine our future success.

Clearly the role of leaders and communicators in the weeks, months and years ahead is to help curate organisational cultures in which everyone has a voice, is truly heard, and feels the contributions they make to their organisation’s success are genuinely valued, and wherever possible… acted upon.

The last word

There are, of course, many more insights that Axiom’s 25 years afford, but what we know for sure is that being able to distil the deluge and concisely communicate matters most of all. We’ve been doing it successfully for 25 years – cutting through the noise so that our clients, and their people, benefit from the experience we’ve gained by working with so many leading businesses for so many years. But don’t take our word for it, as ever the last word should go to our customers.

“Axiom just has so much experience. They made their resources readily available… We trusted their experience and judgement and they led us to a great conclusion.” – Penny Lauder, Swansea University

As 2021 closes, we want to thank Penny, her colleagues at Swansea University, and all those we’ve worked with in so many companies and countries, both past and present, a very happy and healthy holiday. We very much look forward to partnering with you as we embark on our next 25-years.

Axiom’s passion is helping organisations achieve their full potential by better engaging, informing, aligning, training and motivating their own people. We focus on practical application – inspiring and equipping leaders to take their teams with them on their journey to excellence. If you’re interested in discovering more about how we’ve helped some of the world’s leading businesses secure success, check out this celebratory blog reflecting the highlights of our 25-year journey.