Music by Timmoor from Pixabay

Make it Work – Series 4

Developing Your Leadership For The Future of Work

In Series 4 of Make it Work we’re talking about upskilling and why we believe it’s the key to attracting and retaining great people and thriving in today’s workplace. We aim to give you thought-provoking ideas and practical takeaways that you can use to future-proof your organisation.

Episode summary

Explore the transformative themes of 2023 in our podcast, delving into upskilling and AI’s impact on sustainable business growth. Uncover the essence of upskilling beyond buzzwords, and witness AI’s evolution into a dynamic problem-solving ally. Our episode navigates the nuances of cultivating a learning culture, tailored for small businesses. Leadership’s crucial role in guiding teams through uncertainty is emphasized. As Series 4 concludes, a compelling call urges businesses to embrace upskilling and AI for sustained relevance and a culture of continuous learning amid rapid change.

 

Episode summary

Angela Connell-Richards, CEO of Vivacity, discusses the impact of AI, particularly ChatGPT, on education in the latest Make it Work Podcast episode. She emphasizes generative AI’s role in writing, presentations, and productivity, addresses concerns like plagiarism, and predicts upcoming changes. Angela stresses the need for educators to adapt, calling for responsible legislation to prevent misuse. Her insights provide valuable guidance for navigating the evolving AI landscape in education.


References: 

https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelatkconnell/

 

Episode summary

In the dynamic landscape of the modern workforce, the conventional approach to recruitment is undergoing a transformation. Skills-based hiring and development is reshaping the way organisations attract and retain talent.


References: 

https://www.weforum.org/reports/the-future-of-jobs-report-2020/

https://www.jobsandskills.gov.au/

 

Episode summary

In the fast-paced world of modern workplaces, the importance of mental health and well-being is increasingly coming to the forefront of discussions. In this episode, we delve into the intricacies of workplace mental health, discussing anxiety, stress, and burnout and strategies to support our teams.


References: 

https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/health/mental-health/national-study-mental-health-and-wellbeing/2020-2022

https://cmhaa.org.au/our-resources/research-leading-mentally-healthy-workplaces-survey-report-2023/ 

https://www.beyondblue.org.au/mental-health/burnout 

 

Episode summary

In the latest episode of the Make it Work podcast, we dive deep into the pressing issue of the gender pay gap in Australia and explore effective strategies for small businesses to overcome this challenge. 

This episode sheds light on the distinct nature of the gender pay gap, emphasising its separation from equal pay. We discover the importance of pay equity and transparency, with insights on establishing remuneration policies and the benefits of transparent processes, as highlighted by research showing that open discussions about pay are vital to employee retention. 

The taboo surrounding pay transparency is also dissected, with a call for greater visibility and fairness in compensation. Unconscious bias takes centre stage as we reflect on personal biases and privilege, along with practical exercises to address them. Structured interviews and inclusive hiring practices are discussed as key tools to ensure fairness in decision-making. Ultimately, this episode serves as a valuable resource for small businesses aiming to play a pivotal role in closing the gender pay gap and fostering gender equality in the workplace.

References: 

https://www.wgea.gov.au/the-gender-pay-gap 

https://forms.workday.com/content/dam/web/au/documents/ebooks/workday-peakon-employee-voice-nine-month-warning-ebook-en-AU.pdf

 

Episode summary

In this episode, Lachy and Karen talk to Mark Eggers, co-founder and head of sales of Yarno, a team-based gamified learning platform that embeds information to improve your team’s performance in a fun and engaging way. They discuss how Yarno embeds and reinforces information to support upskilling teams and the challenges around defining learning success.

Episode summary

Discover the power of kindness in the workplace in our latest podcast episode! We revisit the topic of the most downloaded episode of season three, exploring what has changed in the last year and what kindness may look like in the ever-evolving economic climate. 

Episode summary

Discover the secrets to upskilling remote teams. Join our hosts as they delves into the world of remote team optimisation with special guest Richard Phu, the Managing Director of Outsourcing Angel.

Episode summary

In this episode, the focus is on how smaller businesses can develop their team members and consider career pathways. 

The hosts discuss the importance of attracting and retaining great employees in a tight employment market and  highlight the value of having career conversations with employees to understand their motivations and aspirations. 

Karen & Lachy share their own experiences and provide insights into creating opportunities for skill development in small businesses. They also discuss the impact of personal growth and learning on employee retention, including reviewing a report that reveals employees leave when they don’t see a path for personal development. 


References: 

https://www.smartcompany.com.au/smart50-workplaces/smart50-workplaces-category-top-performers-news/

https://www.afr.com/work-and-careers/workplace/why-these-companies-want-staff-to-run-businesses-on-the-side-20230619-p5dhog

https://forms.workday.com/content/dam/web/en-us/documents/ebooks/workday-peakon-employee-voice-nine-month-warning-ebook-enus.pdf

Episode summary

In this episode, Lachy and Karen discuss the book “Machines Behaving Badly” by Toby Walsh, a renowned Australian AI expert. The book explores the ethical and moral considerations of AI and its impact on society. 

Walsh merges technical AI expertise with a philosophical perspective, highlighting both the challenges and potential solutions related to bias, privacy, and lethal autonomous weapons. 

Karen and Lachy reflect and discuss the necessity of regulation in AI and the current lack of governance, the ethical challenge of AI autonomy and its implications for the workplace.

References: 

https://www.booktopia.com.au/machines-behaving-badly-toby-walsh/book/9781760643423.html 

Episode summary

In this episode Amal Awad is our guest, discussing the importance of creativity in the workplace and how to develop this skill in ourselves and our teams. 

Amal, a writer and performer, challenges the notion that creativity is innate and explores ways to dispel the myth that only a few people are creative. Our conversation explores personal blocks to creative thinking and how to encourage its development. 

We discuss the connection between creativity and innovation, emphasising the need for organisations to value and embed creativity to drive innovation. Our key takeaways, included reclaiming the word “creative,” finding creative outlets for personal fulfilment, and encouraging individuals to bring their authentic selves to work. 


References: 

https://amalawad.com/

https://www.booktopia.com.au/bitter-sweet-amal-awad/book/9780645240085.html?

Episode summary

To cultivate consistent learning practices, enhance employee engagement, and drive long-term growth we need to shift our perspective on learning, moving away from lengthy formal training and embracing smaller learning moments. In this episode, Karen and Lachy discuss various strategies that work well in fostering consistent upskilling practices, such as incorporating learning into team meetings, sharing books/podcast insights with the team, and engaging in regular learning activities like masterclasses. 

Episode summary

In this episode, Karen and Lachy discuss the use of AI in recruitment and selection processes. They explore the pros & cons, including the potential to save time for the hiring managers, impact on the candidate experience and bias that may lie within  AI-driven hiring decisions.

Using published research and media reports, they explore the potential benefits and risks of using AI in recruitment and selection, highlighting the need for careful consideration, transparency, and ethical use of these technologies.


References: 

https://theconversation.com/ai-pioneer-geoffrey-hinton-says-ai-is-a-new-form-of-intelligence-unlike-our-own-have-we-been-getting-it-wrong-this-whole-time-204911

https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-built-ai-to-hire-people-discriminated-against-women-2018-10

https://fortune.com/2021/06/18/job-interview-artificial-intelligence-remote-online/ 

https://www.wired.com/2015/04/hire-like-google/ 

https://news.bloomberglaw.com/daily-labor-report/new-york-city-ai-bias-law-charts-new-territory-for-employers 

The Alignment Problem 

Man-Made

Episode summary

In this episode, Lachy and Karen revisit an episode from season two where they discussed who is responsible for workplace culture.

Last season they intentionally took opposing views on the topic, with Karen siding with everyone being responsible for workplace culture, while Lachy said it’s the owner or CEO’s responsibility.

This leads them to ask who is responsible for learning culture? Although everyone has a role to play in culture, someone needs to be accountable

Ultimately they conclude that it’s the responsibility of the CEO and C-level executives to drive the learning culture, and it should be intentional, just like workplace culture. This will help learning to be part of day-to-day business operations and a way to achieve the strategic goals of the business.


References:

Season 2, Episode 5: Make It Work: Who is Responsible for Workplace Culture? on Apple Podcasts

Episode summary

In this podcast episode, Karen and Lachy are joined by Linda Murray, an Executive Coach and Leadership Development Expert, to discuss the importance of building a learning culture in organizations. 

Despite the benefits of having a learning culture, it is rare to hear an organisation describe their culture as a “learning culture”, perhaps due to its perceived cost and difficulty in measuring it. 

Linda suggests that psychological safety is essential to enable the opportunity and appetite to learn, and having a culture of feedback and learning from mistakes can be a straightforward (and no cost!) way to start building a learning culture. 

Linda also shares her top three skills that everyone could benefit from developing in the workplace along with the shift in leadership skills from technical to humanistic skills over the past decade.


References: 

athenaleadershipacademy.com.au

https://www.linkedin.com/in/lindamurrayathena/ 

https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/fostering-psychological-safety-at-work-w-special-guest/id1572388470?i=1000584839842 

Free Career Planning Ideas from Linda Murray (Athena Leadership Academy)

Episode summary

Why we need to shift the way workplace learning is approached.

In this podcast episode, Lachy and Karen discuss the importance of upskilling staff in the workplace and what needs to change in workplace learning to achieve this goal. 

They explore how learning needs to move from a one-off training to continuous learning, how there are different types of training and learning and why a mindset shift is needed. Using examples of  what growth-oriented L&D teams do in large corporations to facilitate learning, and also how smaller businesses can implement this type of learning to keep their business growing and thriving.


References: 

https://mccrindle.com.au/resource/infographic/trends-of-2023-infographic/ 

Episode summary

Have you ever struggled to find an effective approach to training your employees?

In this podcast episode, Lachy and Karen sit down with Chris Tan, the Learning and Development Manager at Winning Academy, to discover their tailor-made approach to employee learning.

Winning Academy understands that every employee has unique learning needs, which is why they categorise their learning programs into compliance, performance enhancement, and growth. By creating personalised learning plans through growth plans, check-ins, and self-reflection, they ensure that each employee’s individual learning needs are met, setting them up for success.

But, that’s not all. Tan also shares how Winning Academy aligns their learning approach with business strategic goals and individual team member goals, making sure that every employee’s development contributes to the success of the business. And, for those employees who may not be interested in development, Tan suggests having open and honest conversations to understand their goals and see if they align with the team or business objectives.

Don’t miss out on this valuable insight into how Winning Academy’s approach to employee learning can drive business success.

References:

Contact Chris Tan at academy@winning.com.au

Episode summary

In this podcast episode, Karen and Lachy discuss the theme of this season of  MIW (Make It Work) for 2023, which is upskilling. 

They discuss that due to the speed of change in the job market, what is required in a particular job is changing, and new jobs are created, while some jobs are no longer necessary. Automation is becoming more common in the workplace, making it necessary to rethink where human time is best spent. 

The hosts differentiate between hard skills (technical skills) and soft skills (human skills), and they emphasise that as automation and AI become more common, businesses must find new ways to differentiate their products and businesses by zeroing in on customers’ needs and providing superior customer service. 

This podcast episode emphasises the importance of EQ, empathy, communication, and time management in the workplace. The hosts also share statistics that show that 40% of workers will require reskilling or upskilling every six months or less, and forecasts that soft skill-intensive occupations will account for two-thirds of all jobs by 2030.

References: 

3 Ways to Boost Retention Through Professional Development (hbr.org)

What ‘upskilling’ means for the future of work – BBC Worklife

https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/deloitte-review/issue-16/employee-engagement-strategies.html 

https://www2.deloitte.com/au/en/pages/economics/articles/soft-skills-business-success.html?_ga=2.73832530.1738873846.1585518370-628618971.1585109874

https://www.linkedin.com/business/learning/blog/top-skills-and-courses/most-in-demand-skills

https://www.nationalskillscommission.gov.au/reports/state-australias-skills-2021-now-and-future/chapter-7-emerging-skills/digital-skills-australia-and-internationally 

Episode summary

In this episode, Karen and Lachy discuss the importance of hiring for behavior rather than just skills or experience with Pree Sarkar, the founder and director of Switch Recruitment.

Pree explains that 46% of hires fail when they are hired just based on skills alone, and that hiring based on values is critical. He shares his experience of creating a value-based hiring process, which involves identifying non-negotiable values and creating an interview guide to score candidates on a scale of one to ten.

They also discuss how this process helps reduce bias and unify the hiring process. When we hire for values it creates a culture of shared values and reduces friction in the company.

References:

https://www.gartner.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/1-03-23-gartner-identifies-top-nine-workplace-predictions-for-chros-in-2023

www.switchmethod.com.au

Episode summary

Welcome to the first episode of 2023! In this episode, we discuss the evolution of upskilling and its impact on the workplace. With the world of work constantly changing, the concept of upskilling is becoming increasingly important. Instead of thinking of our jobs in terms of the specific roles we hold, we’re now transitioning to thinking about the skills we apply on a daily basis. These skills are what will determine our pay, promotions, and future training and development opportunities.

Karen starts off by discussing the World Economic Forum’s future of jobs report, which highlights the top skills that are emerging and becoming more important in the workplace. According to the report, eight out of the top ten skills for 2025 are “soft skills” such as problem-solving, self-management, and working with people. The other two skills are related to technology. With automation rapidly increasing, it’s becoming more important than ever to focus on developing these human skills.

Lachy shares his perspective as the MD of a technology company. He says that at his company, they focus on upskilling their employees with human skills, such as communication, flexibility, and adaptability. These skills are particularly important in a project-based work environment, where cross-functional teams must work together effectively. Lachy sees the increasing use of technology as a positive, as it frees up employees to focus on the areas where they can add the most value and enjoy their work.

Upskilling is becoming increasingly important in today’s rapidly changing workplace. With 50% of employees expected to need reskilling by 2025 and 40% of current workers’ key skills expected to change in the next five years, it’s crucial for both individuals and businesses to stay relevant and thrive.

References from episode:

https://www.weforum.org/reports/the-future-of-jobs-report-2020/

https://www.jobsandskills.gov.au/