Dallas Innovates 2021 Thought Leaders: Deloitte

As Deloitte's Kevin Knowles puts it, "Organizations face a choice between returning to a post-COVID world that is simply an enhanced version of yesterday OR building one that is a sustainable version of tomorrow. The risk is more than that of falling behind—it’s the possibility of never catching up at all."

Kevin Knowles, Principal, Deloitte Consulting 

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How should companies be thinking about building towards the future?

Organizations face a choice between returning to a post-COVID world that is simply an enhanced version of yesterday OR building one that is a sustainable version of tomorrow. The risk is more than that of falling behind—it’s the possibility of never catching up at all. Deloitte has produced the “Capital H: A Human Capital Podcast Series” that provides perspectives on this new future and engages with leaders around the U.S. in their views and how they are building towards the future. 

What are some of the most critical changes North Texas businesses should make to face the future effectively?

COVID-19 has challenged business leaders to do three things at once: stage the return to work, understand and leverage the advancements they enacted during the crisis, and chart a new path forward. As organizations stage the return to work, they should seize this opportunity to step back and make sure that they are creating clear connections across individual jobs, team objectives, and the organization’s mission. 

To strengthen the link between belonging and organizational performance, organizations should do more than treat their workers fairly and respectfully; they should enable a deeper connection by drawing visible linkages as to how their contributions are making an impact on the organization and society as a whole. 

Kevin Knowles

What do you see as you look ahead? What’s coming? 

Balancing risk and opportunity are absolutely critical. Organizations should manage the risk while also focusing on opportunity, growth and potential innovation. The organizations that are thinking it through, that are taking a step back and truly rearchitecting work, can meet the challenge head-on and have tremendous opportunity and untapped productivity moving forward. 

A great analogy from our podcast series was the story of Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. In the story, they talk about living in the world of the Red Queen. And, in the world of the Red Queen, you need to run twice as fast as you ever ran before to make any progress. And, that’s the world that we’re living in. In order to make progress, we do need to run twice as fast. And that’s part of the leadership challenge of the future. 

A version of this Thought Leaders article was first published in Dallas Innovates 2021: The Resilience Issue.

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