Untapped Potential and the Future of Work in Australia

Untapped Potential and the Future of Work in Australia

Untapped Potential and the Future of Work

Internationally and in Australia, there has been a lot of focus on the future of work lately. The rise of Artificial Intelligence, the gig economy and the implications for employment are issues that will continue to pose significant questions for our society well into the future. Of course challenges to the workplace from technological change aren’t new. The combination of ageing populations, globalisation and the pace of current change do however present a unique set of circumstances and possible solutions.

A myriad of factors will shape the solutions from policy settings, economic conditions, political will and the speed of change. Interim executive leadership can increasingly play its part in this transition. Leaders capable of adapting to new environments by applying their extensive experience will be vital to guiding organisations and their people.

A recent assignment Odgers Interim delivered showcased the often untapped flexible executive leadership Australia has at its fingertips. If we look beyond the ‘usual suspects’ and work collaboratively with our network, we can identify outstanding interim executives who will help shape the future of work in this country.

A critical leadership role had become unexpectedly vacant in a longstanding client of our Search business, Odgers Berndtson. The role was niche and could not be found within our existing interim executives. Given we work closely with our colleagues in Search, we assembled a team of researchers and swiftly mapped the market tapping into both existing clients and those with relevant networks. Within 3 days we had unearthed several high calibre candidates and successfully appointed a candidate residing in Adelaide to complete a four month assignment in Sydney who could start within 10 days of taking the brief.

I highlight this example to illustrate that Australia’s workplace is changing. To move an interim executive interstate isn’t unheard of but it’s not common. Those pursuing an independent career are increasingly open to a short-term move. The capabilities and skills across Australia are exceptional and for interim assignments, often not properly considered based on a misconception that it can’t be done or people aren’t willing to move.

The future of work will continue to change rapidly and fundamental challenges to the labour market will only increase. It’s my belief we have incredible interim executives able to meet and solve some of our key leadership. Looking beyond our local markets or networks will give organisations a significant competitive advantage for the future and will tap into an underutilised skill base that has experience and expertise in abundance.

Further reading 

Odgers Interim UK - Interims & Modern Working Practices

McKinsey Report on Independent Workers

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