Share This Post

Home >> Communities >> Talent

When Culture DOES NOT Eat Strategy for Breakfast

Here are the takeaways from the panel discussion at NASSCOM HR Summit 2017 featuring Dr Tanaya Mishra, Accenture; Krishnan, MindTree and Chair: Sandeep Chaudhary, Aon Hewitt.

Key Takeaways:

  • Execution follows strategy, and culture determines the manner in which the execution is likely to happen. That’s why, for leaders, it is most important to know what’s actually going on in the trenches. Lest it be mistaken, culture isn’t something fuzzy or akin to crystal ball gazing. It is actually the “secret sauce”. For instance, organisations like Accenture have what is called, “Conduct Counts”, reflective of values that will not be compromised. It’s the code of business ethics that companies adhere to and determines even how the weakest link in an organization ought to behave. The journey of HR is often about getting it right.


  • There has been a discernible shift from cost arbitrage to value creation, with an increased focus on the intellectual orbit. It’s about being in the “new new.” Change is inevitable, and the pressure to re-skill has never been greater; yet, do we adopt a human approach while addressing it? At the same time, if we don’t play catch-up, we will soon be like dinosaurs. A significant part of HR’s journey today is about ensuring that organizations are future ready. Getting that crucial balance right.


  • This kind of radical change will have serious implication on the design of an organization. The need to be digital is most different from simply running the business, as was the case in the past. The mind-set required is very different too. The workforce that we already have, will have to morph into new-age professionals. It can only happen if organizations are adaptive, agile and there’s uberization of resource deployment.


  • We may be in a situation where there are more managers than subject matter experts. This condition may soon reverse and expertise will be required in many areas.


  • Moreover, we often go on an acquiring spree (Acqui-hire) to build new expertise and show reluctance in changing the overall organizational culture, as a viable alternative. Admittedly, re-architecting the organizational DNA isn’t an easy ask at all, but will have to be done in order to stay relevant.


  • The new workforce isn’t about you vs me anymore, which has led to bell curves disappearing in organizations. The need is to have a liquid workforce which can quickly disband after projects and re-assemble for new ones with very high TATs.


  • Tough messages will have to be communicated. In an era defined by a high degree of automation, it has to be done in a humane manner. That, re-skilling will lead to more value for individuals and customers, will have to be communicated effectively. In most organizations, it is the middle layer which is most threatened today. It will be crucial for HR to be able to respond to this challenge. It is imperative to get it right – where exactly the dollars are being spent (tech re-skilling standpoint) which will ultimately translate into profits or not.


  • A clear bias for those who are able to offer end-to-end solutions – full stack engineering. Such organisations will need to have a much deeper understanding of customers and the value chain. This will also call for Talent Utilization Benchmarks, precisely doing more with less.


  • Collaboration & innovation is the need of the hour, much more than it was in the past. For instance, banks are trying to reduce the number of branches drastically, and yet provide enhanced customer experience through digital. Also, the CSR angle has made organisations look beyond profitability alone. How do we enable a system where great minds are able to come together and work towards solving a common problem?


  • Just as the business landscape is changing, so are grievances and their redressal mechanisms. Barriers are being broken and people are getting a much greater exposure, beyond their own functional areas. Employee Wellness is now an area of focus.


  • A high degree of knowledge sharing is happening internally, to break the mould of a siloed approach.


  • Adopt, adapt & accelerate. Let go of past successes. And stop being merely a business enabler. HR is THE AGENDA.

This blog is about the author’s session at NASSCOM HR Summit. You can see blogs from other session using this tag: hr summit 2017 

Share This Post

Leave a Reply