With constant advances in technology and lifestyle preferences, it's no wonder that companies are facing dramatic shifts in work culture. Curious about what the future holds, we’ve asked a few female founders to look ahead and predict work culture trends.
Adriana Lica, Founder of BloomBox HK
How do you see work culture changing in the future?
Transparency: I believe we will begin openly sharing business intelligence to improve efficiency. Within BloomBox HK, I give all of my teammates access to every single element of our business performance, from sales data to our advertising dashboards to our customer service CRM tools, even to my own personal email account. I want my team to not just feel, but also see with their own eyes, that their actions can directly affect our business across these different touch points.
Flexible office life: Working remotely, but staying connected with your team, either via Slack of WhatsApp, saves everyone commuting time that can be used towards accomplishing more of the work, and at the end of the day instills a sense of trust amongst everyone. I practice this within my startup, but notice this change taking over other companies in Hong Kong, as well.
Work outsourcing: This is another key change which might raise a few eyebrows, but I think it's a good one. I allow my team members to save time by outsourcing some of their tasks to freelancers, taskrabbit apps like GoGet.my, or even their friends.
My employees earn a salary and have a list of goals and deliverables they need to achieve. How they get this done, is completely up to them as long as there’s no negative impact to our business, of course.
What bad habits have you revisited, to streamline your work?
One of my worst habits is spreading myself thin across work, startup and personal commitments. That makes it hard to prioritize, but the fix was relatively easy. I use any.do, a task management tool, for all spheres of my life.
Maggie Ng, Founder of Finexasia
What do you predict for the future of work culture?
I believe the future will embrace the importance of simplicity... As society becomes more efficient, it will demands agility, cost efficiency and transparency. These demands will shift work culture more to direct business models, online straight through processes, less organizational layers, lighter infrastructure and, most importantly, simplicity.
What advice do you have for other founders?
Females are the best problem solvers. So, I think we each have ways to cope with the stress and anxiety of overwhelming work demands. For me, spending time with family and friends helps me reset. No matter what has happened, I remind myself that the sun will rise in the morning bringing with it the promise of a new day!
Odette Umali, Founder and Managing Director of Nurture Well Ltd.
Looking ahead, how do you foresee work culture changing?
I think future work culture will be based on collaboration and purpose-based teams. Technology is the enabler for this networked business culture. Connecting and working together is made easier by technology.
Business will also be more transparent and efficient. Information will be readily available to everyone -- big or small business, entrepreneurs or corporates. Information such as reputation, track record and endorsements from previous deals will also be readily available.
What advice do you have for other founders who might feel overwhelmed with things to do?
There will always be things to do, ideas to develop and execute and goals to reach. Someone told me a good advice that all these will never happen if you, the entrepreneur is not there. So as an entrepreneur, you should prioritize taking care of yourself. Take care of your physical and psychological health. Your health is your wealth too.
Hiam Sakakini, Co-Founder of Think Change Grow
What do you predict will be future work culture trends?
Just like there has been a lot of emphasis in the past on customer experiences, I feel like the future will revolve around employee experience. Companies will need to think more about the experience employees have around every touchpoint with their organization, from the first time they discover the company to their first day of work all the way through to the time they leave.
Today, companies are being reviewed and rated just like a restaurant on apps like glassdoor for example. If your organization has not started mapping each and every touch point and figuring out how they can improve, then they already behind in attracting top talent.
What advice do you have for other founders to streamline their work experience?
Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize. There are only so many hours in the day. Think about the biggest thing you can achieve in the particular space of time and how it maps to your bigger goals. And don't forget to make time to really think about what those big hairy goals are.
Your goals and your values should guide everything you do and every decision you make, so it's important to take time to get really clear on those. We are getting better and revisiting these and refining every quarter and breaking them into smaller chunks that are achievable on a quarterly basis.
This article was compiled in collaboration with Eaton House, a social working space for entrepreneurs.