An employee-centric approach to internal communications and other HR-related activities has become more popular, especially in the context of Covid-19 pandemic.
Linh Viet Do, co-founder of VinAxia, a human resource service organization, says that one of the changes any business can do is to improve the way of selecting people, build teams and group of people who share the same belief, same core values already from truly who they are, it’s like DNA familiarity.
Also, organizations will need more and more people who are able to think strategically but act tactically smoothly, servant leaders, cooperative leaders and local leaders in order to extract out the best potential of the “generalist generation” or the T-type professionals.
You mentioned that the “T-type professionals” (generalists’ generation) as well as new type of leader positions will be born after Covid-19. What businesses should prepare for that?
Linh Viet Do: This T-shaped type of people will need an environment that is open, flexible and filled with rich challenge to live in. It could be considered as businesses’ DNA, and that is what businesses should prepare to welcome this generation.
They should maintain choosing the right people to enrich the DNA, training for open minded employees, creating more and more challenge as well as keeping a flexible way of working inside the organization.
In an artcile published on TheLEADER on new types of leadership born after Covid-19, you mentioned “Chief Behavior Officer (CBO)” that is replacing the HR specialists; you also mentioned CHO (Chief Human Officer), which basically is a new C-Level. Please make it clearer about the difference of HR department before and in the new normal, especially the CHO position?
Linh Viet Do: Starting from the new normal, “conformity” becomes very much important compare to before. HR departments were focusing on finding the right skills the company needs more than finding the right qualities that fits it, and that is old story.
As we knew, employees start working for themselves, they try to balance work-life as much as possible, they would prefer to be in a familiar belonging circle; the compatibility will be the one that connects organization and its employees.
All of those require full focus on people aspect, to understand employee deeply, to share the same DNA with them, to find the right person more than the right skill, to grow the right quality more than to mine the right capacity.
And that is exactly the difference before and in new normal of HR departments, or specially CHO position, it requires both wider and deeper level of understanding about people instead of just focusing on skill and capacity aspects as before.
Recently, we’re mentioning a lot about remote working could become a trend in the context that the pandemic is not ending. Would this have any impact into what you said about the personal relations, the way of building teams/groups?
Linh Viet Do: Working remote is reducing physical interaction, that makes it more difficult to maintain the team spirit and bring new experience to personal relations, it’s not as easy as before to get familiar and maintain the good relationship among people.
One of the changes any business can do is to improve the way of selecting people, build teams and group of people who share the same belief, same core values already from truly who they are. It’s like DNA familiarity, that information can be extracted from their own life-stories and a deep process of assessment.
You emphasize about the importance of changing the way businesses select people. So, how is this methodology happening and how businesses should change?
Linh Viet Do: There are multiple methodologies support new way of selecting people, in common, they all try to see the full picture about each candidate and the stories of his or her life in order to truly and deeply understand about the candidate and make sure that is the one.
The importance here is that employers cannot treat people as just pieces of paper, they are not just “CVs”. We cannot just read their CVs, give them some tests, let them go through some interviews and assume that we understand them enough to make decision.
We must use deeply assessments and listen to their stories, what made their life, which values they naturally believe in. We cannot just “sell” them the company’s values and assume they will love it and stay with the company; it doesn’t happen anymore.
So, businesses should invest more into people aspect and try to extract out as much as possible people’s stories in recruitment process, we must understand very deeply about our candidates in order to make sure the compatibility is high. We have to open our mind and accept new way of doing recruitment – listening to stories, having deep assessment processes; not just CV, testing and interviewing as before anymore.
Which are the qualities of a leader who are able to think strategically but act tactically smoothly?
Linh Viet Do: It’s quite straightforward, in order to think strategically, that leader must be a visionary and data-base mindset. But to act tactically smoothly, the leader must be very much flexile in making decision and implement it, information have to be collected from bottom up, and the leader need to understand what is happening there, in the bottom line, and to do it, empathy is required.
Besides, wide-view is super important for quick and tactic adaption, this is the ability of generalizing the information but has to be balancing with specialization toward the short-term goal.
In short, a visionary who are able to balance between generalization and specialization, flexible and empathetic would be a leader who are able to think strategically but act tactically smoothly.
You mentioned the importance of servant leadership, cooperative leadership, local leaders… after Covid-19. Is there any chance that those factors exist in one person?
Linh Viet Do: Of course, there are always people like that. Leadership in the end, is the art of working with people, moving toward achieving a common goal together. Leadership style and qualifies could be different by either time or people but the mission never changed. You can always find a local leader who is able to empower team members as a servant and cooperative leader.
We mentioned the rise of a new generation called the “generalist generation” or the “T-type professionals”, same thing happens to a leader. A T-shape leader will be able to quickly adapt with leadership style and approach for the requirements of leadership in new normal age.