PMP - Podcast - Teresa Duke Featured Image

How To Get Your Organization Unstuck (With Teresa Duke)

Is your company stuck? Are you held back by archaic processes, hierarchy constraints? Are you struggling to retain talent? Learn how to solve these problems and get unstuck using agile workforce strategies, offered up by top speaker and expert on values-based hiring, Teresa Duke.

Related Links:

Audio Transcription:

Tim Reitsma:

Thanks for tuning in. I’m Tim Reitsma, the resident host of People Managing People. Welcome to the podcast. We’re people managing people, and we want to lead and manage better. We’re owners, founders, entrepreneurs. We’re middle managers, we’re team leaders. We’re managing people, and yes, we do human resources, but we’re not HR, at least not in the traditional sense. We’re on a mission to help people lead and manage their teams and organizations more effectively. So, if you want to lead and manage better if you want to become a better organizational leader and more effective people manager, then join us. Keep listening to the podcast to find the tips, tricks, and tools you need to recruit, retain, manage, and lead your people and organization more effectively. And while listening to this show, please subscribe and join our mailing list on peoplemanagingpeople.com to stay up to date with all that’s going on.

Welcome to the People Managing People Podcast, where we aim to help to drive focus on your people with exploring the best of building company culture, employee engagement, talent, and human resource management. Thanks for tuning in. I’m your host, Tim Reitsma, culture creator with SPARK creations and co-founder of the Culture Assassins media company. Here’s a question for you. Is your company stuck? Is it being held back with archaic process, hierarchy constraints, or seeing your competitors launch products ahead of you? Or are you struggling to hire people or retain talent? Well, I think my guest today is going to be able to provide some insights and offer some really simple strategies on how to get unstuck.

So, my guest today is Teresa Duke. She recently wrote a white paper on how to build an agile workforce. This paper is focused on guiding HR and talent leaders. Yes, that’s you, people leaders, on how to create more agility in talent strategies. Teresa has extensive experience in leading people in all sides of organizations, to recently venturing out as a consultant. Theresa is a go-to speaker and expert on values-based hiring, building and executing talent strategies, and is a sought after executive coach. So, welcome, Theresa.

Teresa Duke:

Thank you, Tim. I’m happy to be here.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah, I’m happy to have you. I’ve been following you for quite some time, as well as we have the privilege of consulting with the same company SPARK Creations, and I just love the work you’re doing. And just before we hit the record button, you were telling me that you have discovered a passion for writing, so tell us a little bit about yourself, your purpose, your passion for writing. What fires you up?

Teresa Duke:

Oh, thank you. Well, writing found me, which was kind of funny. So, in the 15 years of HR and recruiting that I’ve done in tech companies, you’re always writing, branding and communications, and you’re teaching and training people a lot, conveying through the written word. And then, in the last few months, I’ve had people ask me to do white papers and blogs and things that I haven’t done before, so that’s been really, really fun to help convey thoughts and ideas that can help people maybe suffer a little less. And that’s been my MO, is if there’s something that I can teach or train or help people develop that enables them to have a little bit more joy in their personal professional lives. And so, as far as background, in the music industry for a bit, definitely HR and recruiting, and now I’ve ventured out into my first love, which is learning development and doing coaching and facilitation as well as the writing that underpins all of this. So, I’m having a blast getting out there in the world in a different way.

Tim Reitsma:

Wow. So, yeah, your career has really taken you in many different directions, and so, as a consultant in this space and really pursuing your passion of learning and developments and also writing, what has been the biggest takeaway for you?

Teresa Duke:

Oh, my goodness. The biggest takeaway, so I still feel like a doobie in the consultant land. But I say that you don’t really get anywhere alone, so building a trusted network of people who tell you the truth and support you on your way has been one of the most important things. And I actually coach a lot of HR people from junior to senior, and with them, even the senior people, it’s like, do you have a network of people that can support you? And how do you cultivate that? And it’s very important because we don’t get anywhere alone. Our life is a group effort, at the end of the day. Even though they’re running a show, it’s really nice to have people along the way to support you.

Tim Reitsma:

I love that you had brought up trust and trusted networks. The last couple of podcasts, this has really come up as a topic, so stay tuned, listeners, for a whole podcast or maybe even a series of podcasts on trust and what does it actually mean? And I’m sure that also plays into this white paper that you wrote on an agile workforce and how to build on, and so let’s dive into that. I’m really curious on, even just a definition, what is an agile workforce? And maybe even more important for me, and I’ll be selfish here, is why should we care? Why do we need to care in today’s world?

Teresa Duke:

Well, you’re going to find lots of buzzwords landing around when you look up an agile workforce, and people try to own it as a contingent workforce definition. At the very beginning of any kind of paradigm shift, you’ll find terms being named and defined in many different ways, and then, which, everyone takes is the exciting one that lasts. So, I did a ton of research, and for our purposes, we define agile workforce as an internal and external workforce that’s highly adaptable, structured to optimize an organization’s ability to execute on the outcomes that they want in this new, very fast-moving, rapidly changing highly competitive market. So, that’s like the technical definition that we’re working with. And I should mention this white paper was sponsored by Weaver, so they were wonderful people that helped bring this to life and we need more of these types of products.

And so, there are, basically, internal and external elements to it. I make sure that I talk about internal/external elements because it’s not just contingent, it’s not just about external solutions for agile workforce, it’s also internal. So, internal would be cross-functional teams, re-skilling initiatives, and technology, how you basically put your teams together in an agile very different way. In the external, it would be flexible on-demand freelancers, consultants, gigsters, people like that. It’s important to know that you can have agility in your workforce in both ways. But perhaps before I go further, Tim, maybe I should back up just quickly to agile, like where it came from.

Tim Reitsma:

Yep, that’s great.

Teresa Duke:

Yeah. Some people might not know what that is, and it is going to be defined in many, many slight variations, but it basically came because developers, software engineers were really frustrated with the slow, frustrating delivery of technology in the 1990s. And by the time they would release products, customers and markets had moved on, and so a group of technologists that were fed up created the Agile Manifesto with 12 principles. And the principles are basically, passion for the customer, collaboration, continuous iteration, and they had all sorts of different methodologies that came out of that, such as Kanban and Lean and Scrum, and so forth. So, what does that mean for HR in terms of how we define the agile workforce? The agile piece is been maneuvered into that agility and flexibility and adaptability because we’re now in this crazy market where everything is changing quite quickly.

And the way consumers are behaving, in what they’re calling an on-demand economy, where we’re getting everything quickly, from our rideshares to our delivered groceries, to our solutions online, it’s changing the way that companies are having to develop things. They have to be faster, speedier, more innovative. And so, that influences the way we structure our staffing and the way we hire and retain talent. So, in order to be competitive, we need to make sure that our workforce is changing alongside these types of economic changes, as well. The World Economic Forum actually calls this the fourth industrial revolution, and before it was relatively linear, that the one before this was digital, but now the change is exponential and it’s disrupting almost every industry and transforming entire systems of production and management and government. So, it’s crazy. So, if you’re confused, be kind to yourself because no one knows exactly where things are going… basically.

In the workforce itself, with all of this on-demand, they’re like, “Hey, things are changing,” there’s kind of an [inaudible 00:09:27]. Before it was like the companies were the powerful people, and they still are, but now the workforce is saying, “Hey, I want to work remotely. I want to work in this way. And wow, technology facilitates my ability to have freedom,” and what does that look like? So, the nature of the workforce is changing, and so the agile workforce itself has different needs. And then, one of the most painful pieces is there’s a lack of skilled talent. So, you’re like, “Oh, but we have more population.” Yes, but we don’t have as many of the skilled talent that we need to meet this increasing demand because every company is now becoming a technology company. And not only that but now we’re competing on the global market, so companies all over the world are now vying for the same talent. I think they said, Ardent Partners did a study, 63% of businesses have got a scarcity in full-time talent pools, and 67% in another study were reporting talent shortages. So, significant, and we’re dealing with a lot of unknowns.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah, there’s so many unknowns into the future, as well as what the future workforce is going to demand. Right? We’ve seen a real high rise in the remote workers, and there’s companies like Zapier, who’s fully remote, 100% remote, versus very traditional brick and mortar companies who may be struggling with how to figure out how to have more of an agile process or agile talent pool. So, as a people leader, whether you’re someone who leads a team of one or you’re sitting at the top of an organization, if you want to think of traditional hierarchies, you’d mentioned highly adaptable, so I’m really curious, what do you think gets in the way of organizations becoming adaptable? And I bring this up because, working with a local tech company recently who instituted or implemented one day a week work from home policy, and it was great, this is what the team was looking for. So, is that the way to do it, just institute something, or do you just let it happen? What are your thoughts on that?

Teresa Duke:

Yeah, this is the hard part because, at the end of the day, the first thing is, it depends on the organization itself, where you’re at, what you’re doing, how big you are, how small you are. The longer you’ve been around, the more ingrained you have certain behaviors and what is right and certain leadership that has pitched making things in a certain way. But following that, I would say that one of the things that hold back organizations is mindset, so change is super hard. We know that. There are tons of consultants making millions and millions of dollars a year trying to help organizations understand and comprehend and successfully manage change, but there’s this fear of change that we have. And up until the third industrial revolution, companies were set up for reliability and predictability. It was about having control, and you’ll see a lot of mature organizations fall into this type of way of being.

Now, that’s totally out the window because of reliability and predictability, of course… Unless you’re talking about security and systems, that’s kind of different, and there’s way to be flexible but you still have to have that reliability and particularly around that sort of initiative and technology. But in general, it’s out of the window in order to meet this new consumer, fast-paced demand, and so you’ve got agility, flexibility, adaptability, speed, and it feels like you’re losing control constantly. And then, you have the startups, who are also struggling because they become too unwieldy too quickly, and they don’t have the systems and structures and disciplines. And so, you’ve got these extremes of like, “This is how it’s done. This is the way we do things.” And a lot of leadership has been ingrained, also, in the way that, “I’m being paid to be an expert on what I know, and if I’m not an expert, then who the heck am I?”

But leadership is also transforming with this mindset into, “Okay, I don’t know, and so my strength as a leader is now how do we figure it out?” Even some people would venture to say, “How do we disrupt ourselves constantly? So, how do we think like a competitor, looking at ourselves two to three years down the line, and see how we could undo the business that we have built?” So, everything is about taking apart what has been the framework for success in business for years and years and years and trying something different. So, when I say it’s the mindset, so then what do you do? What do you do about that?

Tim Reitsma:

What do you do? That’s a great question.

Teresa Duke:

“This is the way we do things,” doesn’t always work, and so the first mindsets you’ve got to look at are your own. And it’s like, “So, how am I having flexibility, adaptability, looking at what’s possible for the future, and how can I take apart what I’ve built if I need to and how attached am I to that? And then, of course, when you’re trying to affect change, as all of us HR leaders have experienced, if you don’t have leadership buy-in, if you’re not willing to be vulnerable, with the fact that they don’t have the answer, but they’re excited to explore, they’re willing to install the people that can be those initiatives, then you’ve got a hope in heck.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah. What you’re talking about reminds me of, back in my career, the company I was working for had a project, and the first thought from management was, “Okay, we’ll just hire a team to help.” And I was thinking, “But we might not need these people in the future, so why hire people and then potentially have to let them go?” So, you used the term gigster, and so I’ll use that, as well. And so, we found a team of people who just wanted to work on a contract, and they came in a couple of days a week, worked remote, made a significant impact in the business and gathered great insights, and it turned out we ended up hiring one of them. Turned out they wanted to come in-house, and so it was just a really great way to find talent in an unconventional way where we needed to be agile because we had a project with a tight deadline and not enough resources, found the resources and ended up keeping one of the resources for a significant amount of time, long-term, as an employee. I like what you said, it’s really that mindset, but also, being vulnerable to learning a new approach or taking a different approach, because as a people leader, somebody in HR or leading a team of engineers or leading a team of salespeople, if you’re not doing it, somebody else’s going to.

Teresa Duke:

Oh, yeah. Yeah. And it requires HR to not just be HR anymore. It requires HR to be business partners. So, having an understanding of what the market’s doing, because in order to find these creative solutions for your talent strategy, that are agile understanding where they can exist. So, in addition to gigsters, crowdsourcing can work for some companies, startup partnerships where you have smaller startups. And maybe you’ve got this unwieldy or singular product-focused company, and you’re like, “Things are going well, but really, are we doing something innovative for the future?” So, then it’s like, “Well, let’s look at maybe partnering with a startup that has alignment with our values and our culture and something around our product. And can we partner with them to develop initiatives that are going to help us be able to pivot to what’s going to happen in the next two to three years?” Offshoring, all sorts of really interesting things that you can do to help bolster up your talent strategy, and they are business decisions, not just HR decisions, which is really exciting.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah, it’s really just breaking down that almost traditional hierarchy or hierarchical structure of HR is just its own silo, and we reach out to HR for things like benefits or somebody is not happy or policy or process. I mean, the last thing, I think, we’d like to see in our organizations is, when we want to hire contract or gigsters or that more flexible workforce, is hearing that, “Well, we don’t have a process or policy to support that.” And have you heard that coming up as a blocker? That people get stuck in that mindset?

Teresa Duke:

Yeah. It’s like, I understand that someone might not have a policy or procedure, but at the end of the day, what are you trying to do? At its very core, an agile workforce liberates human potential, right? So, if you don’t have a policy, then it’s time to like, do you scrap it or do you run something in parallel in another department, beta it out and test it and move it? But if you’re not looking to unleash the collective power of your entire workforce, and just to what you were saying before, it’s not top-down anymore. It’s like, how do we get the inspiration and ideas and creativity from all levels of the organization, working cross-functionally, to be able to move this across? And when you’ve got these old policies and procedures, people across the organization, not in HR, can be part of action-packed teams to initiatives to help make it better. That’s something that blows my mind is how much HR runs as it’s own little, not little, but its own entity. Whereas, in so many progressive organizations, HR is starting to realize that there are people that are passionate about the initiatives HR is doing, that they can bring into their kind of workforce, project-based workforce, and help them run things. And then, that helps see buy-in across an organization. It’s really exciting.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah. And I think you’re kind of touching on some of the core of the white paper that you wrote, which outlines five challenges to workforce agility. One being your lack of leadership support for cultural change because, in some organizations, this is a massive change. And then, an external talent solution. Okay, so you’ve got support, now what do you do? Then there’s the structural changes, which we were talking about, which I’d love to dive into a little bit in a minute, but just that, how’s your organization structured? Is it very siloed or is it cross-functional? And then, there’s the technology. Yeah, if you’ve got somebody sitting on a beach in Hawaii who’s part of your team working on a project, how are they part of your organization? There’s a lot of technology to support that. But also, a lack of investment in learning and development. So, how do we then support our people?

But we’re going down this little path of hierarchy, and this has come up in the consulting that I’ve been involved in, as well, is do we scrap the traditional hierarchical structure? Do we embrace it? Do we flatten it out? This is often seen as a blocker. And even though it’s just a piece of paper with a bunch of titles on it, and yes I’m probably going to get some pushback on that, but at the end of the day, it’s something we’ve created in organizations that hold us back. So, what are your thoughts on that? Do you agree, disagree?

Teresa Duke:

Oh, it’s like the million-dollar question. The way things have been done, are they going to be the way we do things going forward? So, again, like I said before, not necessarily should you rip it all down and completely start with something new and fresh. Again, it depends on the size of your organization, what you’re handling, where you’re at, what are the business needs at a particular time. But there’s some interesting solutions that can help. So, again, we’re talking about change and the order of change. So, Kotter, John Kotter, like the change management guru, he’s got this really interesting theory, or suggestion, which is he recommends companies that are maybe real young, to larger companies, to try out a dual operating system where you build out a smaller project-based entity. He even recommends comprising it of volunteers, saying to the company, “Okay, so we need to make sure that we are meeting the competitive needs of the future and the unknown.”

And so, there’s an idea, and either they get volunteers to come up with the idea, or they have the idea and they get people excited about it. And people will volunteer to work on this project. They still have their other jobs, but they find a way to make it work. And the interesting thing is if this new project starts working, people hear about it because they’re still in their other jobs, they start talking about it, they’re excited, and they’re able to use flatter based communication structures as opposed to the usual hierarchical, put things closer to the customer, even. Right? So, that’s one of the key things around agile is listening very closely to the customer. And so, even to build these different operating structures, infusing them, and as it gets very successful, the success speaks for itself. It’s like modeling success. And so, they can actually gently infuse a larger organization with, “Hey, this works. You guys are happy with this, let’s try it.” So, it doesn’t happen immediately. That’s the thing that’s hard is, you’ve got this massive need for change quickly with what the market’s doing, and then you have slow-moving organizations with very different types of people and personalities.

An example of a corporation that moved was Microsoft. They changed mindset into growth and adaptability and resilience, and they were to do it by having all sorts of different types of theories about how to do that. But I love Kotter’s because it’s a little bit gentle, and like I mentioned before, others will get startups. And they’ll be like, “Look at this cool thing,” and they’ll find a way to integrate the product that the startup is doing into the initiative of the larger organization, which is never easy. But as we said, it always has to start with the top. If you want a really radical example, is one of my most favorite radical examples of massive change is [crosstalk 00:24:19].

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah. I’d love an example. Yeah

Teresa Duke:

I love this story. It’s ING, the Dutch bank. And so, a few years ago, they were realizing that the way consumers were interacting with banking was completely changing, flipping, into that more on-demand as opposed to what it was before. Before it was like, “All banking hours are this, and you will like it.” And now it’s like, “Heck no, consumer wants it when the consumer wants it.” So, what they did is they decided to start with their headquarters, again, starting with a piece of a company as opposed to the whole company, and they put 1000… or what was it? 3,500 people on what they call mobility, which is like putting people on notice that they don’t have a job anymore. And they became very clear about what was the type of mindset that was going to be needed to be able to make the bank move forward into the next 10, 20 years.

And of course, it was very associated with an agile mindset, and they made everybody go through interviews. And they found, astonishingly, that 40% of people went into different jobs, that they weren’t even doing jobs that they were good at, like that they wanted to do or were qualified to do. And they ended up with 1000 people left, after the 3,500, to build the rest of the company. And the other interesting thing was is that you would think, “Oh, they were mostly young people, right?” It’s like, no, they had a huge amount, like a very even balance almost of people who were older. It’s just that they had the mindset of adaptability and resilience and openness to change and learning and growth, and that’s what they found was fundamentally needed. So, there’s all these very fascinating initiatives. Of course, you’ve got to go… Like, they might’ve had some local laws and things like that that made this type of complete radical overhaul possible for them, but you can go gentle or you can go swift. It just depends on the aptitude and what your leadership is ready to do.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah, I love that. And I love that example that you brought up, the ING bank, and just in terms of, it’s moving from the traditional way of, “Here’s our hours, and so you will come,” and listening to the customer in a different way. And that takes a lot of change, but it starts with the leadership, right? And I think, we’re not going to go down that path of traditional hierarchy versus flat, again, that’s a whole other podcast, but I think the story in that is, if you’ve got a few people in your organization who, or maybe you’re even one of them, who is always making that decision, well guess what? You have a team of people who are uniquely bright and have insights and different questions and ideas, and so I think that’s one of the beauties of an agile team is, and an agile workforce, is encouraging different points of view and encouraging different schools of thought. So, as a talent leader or people leader, HR leader, you’re seeking to create that, it’s really, man, a massive shift. It’s not like you’re going to wake up tomorrow and say, “Okay, let’s do a podcast, and this is something we should be doing.” Where do you start? How does it take place? You got to almost dissect the culture of an organization and get it going.

Teresa Duke:

Yeah, culture’s huge on it. So, strategy, of course, what do you want to create? What’s the demand? What’s the market? Strategy, of course, is very, very key to doing this. And then, within that, the culture. If you aren’t focusing on your culture, and the culture, it’s like behaviors and how you think. And so, how the leadership thinks, how people behave, that has to completely flip in some organizations, or maybe some things have to be emphasized that weren’t talked about before. And it has to constantly be re-looked, a culture strategy that’s like, “Okay, what’s our strategy this year for our culture? What’s our strategy next year for our culture?” And also another piece is like when you’re looking at overhauling in terms of an agile… trying to get more of an agile strategy in order to help your business become more agile from that perspective, it’s really important to make sure that you’ve got, obviously, you’ve got your leadership buy-in and… Oh, I totally forgot what I was going to say.

But yeah. Oh, yes, yes, now I remember. So, it’s really important to look at avoiding culture overhaul to the point where you scrap everything. So, there’s this great resource called [inaudible 00:29:15] CP Institute for Corporate Productivity, which has tons of really interesting resources, and they talked about the culture of innovation. And I mentioned it in the white paper when you’re going through, you really want to pay attention to your culture. So, what is it that’s been absolutely wonderful about us as a culture and as a company, and how can we take the best of us and yet still build the future? So, what they’re recommending is culture of renovation. Any type of values overhaul, you’ll see a lot of people recommending, try to see if you can come from where you’ve gone as opposed to completely scrapping and starting new. Unless you’re rife with absolute corruption and ethical problems and dissension, and things like that.

Tim Reitsma:

Then you should probably start. Yes, start fresh.

Teresa Duke:

Then maybe starting fresh would be great. And you mentioned trust, too, Tim, at the beginning of our call, and trust is a piece of this because the internet as a whole has created a power inversion, right? So, before power was in the hands of a few in terms of who controlled knowledge and information. Now, we have so much knowledge and information, and so now consumers and workers have way more knowledge and information to make their decisions. So, with trust, it’s like, “Well, they have a lot more information now. Can we create structures to help them feel trusted?” Bank of Montreal decided to move decision rights to the front lines, to their people that we’re interacting with customers, so they let them make decisions before that coaches, and people like that, would only, coaches and managers would make. But because they did that, they were trusting them, and then the cool part was, is that they were able to increase the speed because there was less red tape and time spent checking on if this was okay with Bob and Sue and Nancy. So, the trust piece, I mean, if you want to look at it, it almost feels like social/emotional growth that agile ties into if done well. A trusting, well-rounded workforce that’s liberating its potential and feeling like it’s contributing on all levels.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah, no, absolutely. Well, trust is a foundation, in my opinion, to any organization, from the very beginning all the way through to how you hire, how you release products. I think trust is a massive conversation on its own. And so, I think, for our listeners, if you’re listening and thinking, “Okay, I’m maybe looking to hire someone, maybe internally, because we’re growing,” there’s an opportunity there to not necessarily have to hire someone and relocate someone into your office or into your building. It’s to look at maybe hiring remotely. Is it a project? I read a stat once where, if you hire someone and they don’t work out, it can cost anywhere up to a third or half of that salary. So, that could be anywhere from, 50 to hundreds of thousands of dollar mistakes. Not saying that should scare you from hiring people, but it’s something that I think we need to adapt.

And I believe that the generations coming up, and even the current generation, are looking for that flexibility in job, in work, where to work, that may be contracts taken on, really to not just, “I need to get a job because I need to pay bills,” but, “I want to get a job to fulfill a greater purpose,” whatever that purpose may be. And so, that may allow companies and talent leaders and HR people to start adapting or, at a minimum, exploring, “Okay, what does an agile workforce look like in my company?” Because it looks different in every organization.

If you’re a company of 10 people, it’s going to look very different than a company of 10,000 people. So, what does that look like? And I think the white paper really sums it up as there’s challenges but also massive opportunity, and opportunity to get unstuck, to unlock the potential of your people. I think you had called it, and maybe it’s, I think, I read [inaudible 00:33:33] a quote from Accenture, “liberates human potential.” And I love that. I love that quote. But it also will help you and your organization move quicker and more effectively and more efficiently.

Teresa Duke:

Yeah, yeah. Especially with like robotics, AI technology, and some people were like, “Oh my gosh, are they going to get rid of our jobs? What does that mean?” But when we’re thinking two or three years ahead, as much as we possibly can as HR professionals and recruitment professionals, maybe there’s a way that we can get on top of that so that the jobs we do are actually involve the thrilling, interesting, strategic, creative bits and we’re able to delegate some of the more monotonous parts of our tasks to the technology to help us. And I wanted to make sure I mentioned technology because we talk about liberating human potential interest. Those are huge ingredients in this, but it’s always underscored by technology as well as the mindset and culture of its people to effectively make an agile workforce a real possibility for you.

Tim Reitsma:

Yeah, I love that you brought that up. And again, in future podcasts, we’re going to talk about technologies and how new technologies and different technologies, and I know the white paper is sponsored by Weaver and it’s Weaver.io. There’s some cool companies and cool technologies to support and enable and elevate our people, regardless of where you sit in an organization. So, as we wrap up, is there one main takeaway in… If somebody is listening to this going, “Okay, I want to adapt this, where do I start?” What is that one takeaway, one nugget of wisdom aside from, “Hey, just go read the white paper”?

Teresa Duke:

Yeah, it’s complex and multifaceted, but an agile workforce starts with you, especially if you’re in an influencer position. It starts with you. How are you working? What is your mindset? Where are you adaptable, resilient? What are you holding onto, “This is the way we do things”? Are your projects taking the best of agile and technology solutions? And is the culture that you’re helping to hire and create making space and making way for agility? And of course, with your leadership, because you’re not a solo person, so your team, are your teams manifesting these behaviors? If you have that, there’s a place you can start from, and if you’re not sure, then there’s tons of resources that are popping up, like this paper and other podcasts and training. It’s actually very exciting because, at its best, like we said, it has the capacity to open up people to a greater contribution level from any level of an organization, even if you eradicate levels. It’s very, very exciting.

Tim Reitsma:

Mm-hmm (affirmative). I love that. So, we will have a link to the white paper down below in the comment section, so we can guide our listeners to that. And also, Teresa, how can people track you down?

Teresa Duke:

Yeah, yeah. So, I’m in the process of building a website, so you can always find me on LinkedIn. So, I’m Teresa without an H, Duke, D-U-K-E, and you can also email me [email protected]. And I love talking about all of this stuff, so I’m happy to connect anytime.

Tim Reitsma:

Perfect. And we will also have links to how to reach out to Teresa, her email, as well as through LinkedIn. So, thank you so much, Teresa, for your time today. I think it’s an interesting conversation and something that, as people leaders, whether you’re in HR or talent or wherever you are in an organization, we need to be thinking about this, because if you’re not, your competitors are. And so, this is something that needs to be top of mind and how to build more agility into our environments, our workforces, and our company. So, thank you again, and for those who are listening, if you like what you heard, I’d love to hear your honest comments down below. Please also head to peoplemanagingpeople.com and subscribe to our newsletter. Also, check out our site for tools and insights on how to manage people, how to lead people. And with that, thank you for listening, and have a great day.

Stay In The Loop
Be first in line to receive our latest podcasts, articles, how-to guides and tool reviews. As a thank you for signing up, we’ll send you a free copy of our 10 Tips On How To Successfully Manage and Lead.