Munich, 26 April 2022. New Work is the buzzword of current work design. It represents a new mindset based on employees’ intrinsic motivation and is supported by trust and responsibility. Among other things, it enables an effective form of employee management, which is motivating for employees because it puts their abilities in the foreground and gives them more freedom to make decisions. Many companies have now adopted this concept. But does it also suit employees? Are they ready for these working models?
Gini, a leading company for AI-based data extraction and known for its photo payment, has been implementing an innovative New Work concept for its employees for years and has developed a short self-assessment. Is it a fit or no-fit?
Ready for self-organization and (self-)responsibility?
New Work offers employees new opportunities for responsible work: classic, hierarchical structures take a back seat, the focus is on self-organization, autonomous work, and greater (personal) responsibility. The basis is a good capacity for self-management and self-leadership, i.e., the ability to reflect and self-regulate emotions to fill one’s position profitably. Employees have to get used to this new work situation and, above all, they have to be able to cope with the level of responsibility. Competences cannot then simply be ceded to higher levels but challenge one’s ego under certain circumstances. Employees should ask themselves: Am I able to cope, bear more (personal) responsibility, and organize and lead myself?
Ready for comprehensive consent decisions and potential conflicts?
Daily work is mostly characterized by many autonomous, self-determined decisions within the mandate and the activities. New Work also means that other employees must be involved in some decisions. Some of these votes follow the principle of consent decisions – a decision is thus decided when there is no longer any objection, even if different opinions are held. For example, this could already start in the hiring process, which often involves employees who will later work with the new employees. They decide jointly who gets hired. Furthermore, other employees only need to be involved in decisions if these impact their field of activity. However, the minimization of hierarchical decision-making processes also entails possible conflicts in coordination processes. At the same time, there is more equality in this concept, i.e. participation. On the one hand, this is initially more time-consuming, but on the other hand, it means appreciation of team members and support for decisions, which results in faster implementation and thus accelerates the process. Accordingly, the consideration: Am I motivated enough to participate in these extended coordination processes? Do I want to help resolve arising conflicts, ideally leading to an agreement? Can I actively represent my point of view and withstand criticism?
Ready for new structures, processes, and management concepts?
New Work concepts focus on work structures and processes that differ from previous familiar models. Although there are no classic hierarchy and control functions, some form of leadership is still necessary. This is not about working toward instruction and task assignments. Instead, it needs other impulses: Leadership should bring supporting and encouraging aspects that provide orientation.
In addition, there is also a concept of roles that employees fill. For example, leadership is also a role that can be put on and taken off depending on competencies and skills. Instead of assigning responsibilities, employees generally have roles that correspond to their position. Therefore, they also serve to create the necessary liabilities within the teams and the company and create a framework within which employees move. Hence the question: Am I interested in these new forms, and do I have the appropriate personality for these structures?
Ready for entrepreneurial thinking?
Due to the high degree of autonomy within self-organization, entrepreneurial thinking is often required from employees, depending on the field of activity and the position that someone holds. This means that employees should be able to take a step out to look holistically at things that go beyond their activities. What are the consequences of my actions at the overall company level? Does my plan fit into the strategy? At the same time, this can be challenging, and not every person is ready to face the effort involved. The consideration: Am I able to master these requirements, or do I even want to?
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