Hope you have been well. After 6 years of being crippled by fear and procrastination I finally decided to start my channel on YouTube.
I have realised that there are Some things that I cannot easily capture through writing and find that speaking carries the message better. The purpose of my channel is to deliver content on fitness, beauty and books in a relatable and authentic way that will give my viewers a few laughs along the way.
If you’re feeling a bit lonely and/ left out on Female Millennial Musings, maybe head on over there and see what I’ve been getting up to 😃 here’s the link to my first video, would really appreciate your support: https://youtu.be/8p_ro8ALRIY
One of the really cool perks about my job is that I get to travel pretty often. Not many people can say that they’re guaranteed to experience 4 new African countries each year and get paid to do so. I have seen the good and the bad and I wouldn’t trade these experiences for anything.
Recently, my job took me to Cote d’Ivoire– a place where every second sentence was “bonjour madam” and a very poorly attempted and broken “Je ne parle pas Francais” I’m probably still fudging it up now… I also visited (for the second time) beautiful Kenya and had two new East African experiences with Uganda and Tanzania which I fell in love with.
You’re probably wondering who I travelled to these countries with and what the purpose of my visits was, I can only answer one of these questions today and it brings me to the purpose of my post today. Traveling with colleagues.
Over the past year I have had the privilege of traveling to the biggest countries (by GDP) in the Western and Eastern parts of Africa with my millennial, and not so millennial colleagues, and I think it would be interesting to share my top 6 realisations on these experiences.
Keep the focus: traveling with millennials is fun but more is expected
This one is quite obvious. traveling with millennial colleagues, especially like- minded ones is quite fun however the pressure to produce solid outputs and provide a greater ROI than other non- millennial trips is expected.
Curiosity reigns: you can do more with research and really push the envelope
Because everyone is young and curious- the research team picks up more information (especially the left- field data points) and also fewer assumptions are made.
“Alone time” is golden
Something we were more deliberate about this time around was scheduling down- time. The result of everyone being in close proximity for 80% of the day means that you all really get to know each other REALLY well. You can gauge when someone is “people-d out” or when a group break is needed. everyone is aligned in thinking and that really strengthens the team bond. When you make time for those random breaks (some late starts and early endings to a day) it really makes all the difference and keeps the burnout at bay. When the team regroups, everyone is well- rested and new perspectives and energy is bountiful.
Give and take
Following on from point 3, traveling for long periods as a unit really teaches you a lot about compromising and sacrificing. you begin to see your colleagues as living and breathing humans that you care for to some degree, beyond the commonalities of a shared employer
Despite us usually being chaperoned by locals in- country, this didn’t save us in Cote d’Ivoire where we could barely communicate in the local language. The research piece in a foreign country where English is not the primary language is almost futile and here we learned the importance of being connected to a network provider via a local sim. Once we were connected, a local sim provided access to translator apps as well as people in the office who were bilingual, to translate our “on- the ground needs” to drivers and chaperones.
A lil party never killed nobody
Emphasis on “a lil” cause a lot will make you lose the plot but “a lil” builds the perfect amount of camaraderie that produces superior results time and time again.
Also, if you’ve read this far, you know it means I’m back on the blogging scene!
It’s no doubt that organizations have started considering and taking shape in order to be future fit. Some organizations could be progressing more rapidly that others due to a geographical influence but what matters is that the pivot in business complements the environment these organizations are working in.
Earlier this year I had the privilege of sitting in on one of South Africa’s most renowned business trends expert and from this engagement I was exposed to quite a few insights around where are businesses going which I would like to share with you.
Business disruption is occurring across all industries.
We are moving to an age where organisations are obsessed with company culture:
Being collaborative and not silo-driven, employers will hire employees who basically push beyond boundaries. We will begin to see a rise in people who are driven by achieving a greater purpose rather than a monomaniacal focus on profits.
Death of the legacy companies!!! Agile companies have a lifespan of 15 years and not because they exit the business lifecycle at the end of the 15 years but because they pivot frequently. (Because this is the future of the business and business- owner mind-set corporates will be serving/ servicing, the big question here is “what steps do corporates in South Africa need to take in order to become relevant for their future client?”
Collapse of the value chain. The space between the product and customer is getting narrower (E.g. Beyoncé and Tidal). Business owners are cutting the middle man and the need to quantify value for money/services rendered increases
The lengthening Omni-channel. It is becoming crucial for corporates to find out where customer are experiencing their brand and whether all the channels are “saying the same” thing.
Digitization pawns, the essential business pivot (Biggest disruptions globally being seen in the automotive industry: ride sharing and driverless cars, and healthcare: Augmented Reality learning techniques)
Mechanization, robotics and the erosion of jobs (Google: Relay Robot).
So in the midst of the tech hurricane, what’s going to happen to our jobs?
Critical thinking, leadership, communication and problem solving ability is key!!! The ability to display the skill of Lateral Thinking in a role will be crucial. Punt this and evolve in this.
New economies enabling new industries. People find themselves in industries they would have never imagined because of this new need of different thinking. (E.g. the partnership between the digital music guy who was hired by LVMH to help build them an ecommerce website….)
The on demand economy/ The sharing economy (Hyatt pairing with Airbnb to create “unhotel” experiences)/ The gig economy (This is forcing companies to rethink labour laws!!!).
The need for unconventional thinking will force educational institutions to ready students in a different way for the workplace.
Effect on education: The need for education disruption
What is your degree worth because there really isn’t any scarcity?
Already in EY UK no degrees are needed for employment
The biggest challenge and commodity will be the skills gap: critical thinking, problem solving, communication, leadership and ownership will be highly valued
So how do we bridge the gap?
What’s wrong with the way we learn? The education system isn’t geared for the knowledge economy….
Vocational training schools need to get mixed in with high tech. (No degree, actual training using holograms for surgeons (Google: HoloLens))
The future of work
It’s no longer linear. There are a lot of stop- starts and career changes
Hybrid skills will be needed
Organisations will hire for attitude, and retrain for skills (this will fix the millennial churn)
Nomadic work swarms. You don’t have to watch an employee working to know that they are getting work done. (reskill yourself to do what you want to do, get your work life flexibility by doing what pays the bills while leaving time for passion projects)
Remote flexi-working options and productivity impact
The impact of the female century will see an increases profitability in companies
Millennials see mentors as people they can take advice from and give advice to.
Jobs of the future- what will they look like?
Things related to drones, coding, virtual reality, UX (We will see skill and career combos that have never existed before such as Life Coaches with an IT background etc.)
Rwanda; the South Korea of the technology realm… delivering blood samples to hard to reach hospitals via drone technology
Ultimately, organizations and their staff must understand the movements of their industries in order to stay relevant in their environment and careers respectively. Nothing can be taken for granted anymore.
I am especially excited though to see how resourceful individuals will become with their toolkit of skills and how they will couple what they know in order to excel in the digital age where their customers are just as, if not more aware of what they need, how they want it and what their service providers must do in order to ensure excellent delivery in a radical and client- centric way.