People want meaningful experiences, today’s tools for success

Digital transformation set to change engagement rules towards new collaborative experiences, biz models

Tomorrow’s successful organisations will balance social, sustainable and emotional values with economic prosperity, a global futurist from Denmark told a women’s conference.

Anne Lise Kjaer

People cannot solve 21st century challenges with yesterday’s tools, forcing them to look for new toolkits, says Kjaer

“For the new models, people want meaningful experiences and to be part of ‘something bigger’ than themselves,” Kjaer Group A/S MD Anne Lise Kjaer told the Asean Women of Tomorrow Conference 2017 held in Malaysia recently.

She noted that digital transformation will change the rules of engagement towards new collaborative experiences and business models.

On navigating the present complexity, Kjaer, who heads the trend management and ideas consultancy, said people cannot solve 21st century challenges with yesterday’s tools, forcing them to look for new toolkits.

“Businesses need to rethink why they exist and why people should engage with them,” she said in a keynote address where she touched on women and four “Ps” that matter: People, planet, purpose and prosperity.

The two-day conference, organised by LeadWomen Sdn Bhd, attracted some 250 corporate women and entrepreneurs.

The conference aimed to encourage women to equip themselves with a futurist mindset, to navigate in the new economy and to foster a purpose-driven leadership to ensure a sustainable future.

Among the topics discussed were disruptive trends of the new economy, multidimensional leader- ship and gender dividend, the four “Ps” of people, product, purpose and prosperity, and systemic approaches to visualise the future.

LeadWomen business development director Dr Marcella Lucas moderated a session that touched on the importance of purpose and trust in future leaders, thriving in innovation strategy and the need for gender unbiasness in the new economy.

The panellists for the session were PricewaterhouseCoopers Malaysia assurance and people partner Pauline Ho, IKEA India country human resource manager Anna Carin Månsson and Common Ground Works Sdn Bhd founding partner/ CFO Erman Akinci.

Common Ground, badged to be the nation’s largest co-working space, caters to entrepreneurs, free-

lancers, startups and small businesses. Launched earlier this year, the outfit provides shared work- space, as well as community and other services.

Another session, entitled “Navigating Disruption Without Gender Diversity….Think Again”, was mo- derated by IWIRC Network co-chair and Ernst & Young senior ED Leong May Lee. IWIRC stands for International Women’s Insolvency and Restructuring Confederation.

Meanwhile, on small and medium enterprises (SMEs), Kjaer argued that they have a chance of making a difference in this period of on-going global uncertainty.

In an article shared at one Kjaer-related website, she noted that SMEs need to leverage their supplier and stakeholder networks, champion their locality, and adopt a transparent and responsive approach that respects consumers’ new needs. — TMR