Enhancing employee performance through disruptive innovation

Leveraging technology in the workplace to improve employees and organisational performance


Salau Ibrahim

Product Manager, TAMS

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The world has become familiar with the impact of innovation in bringing about new ideas, creative thoughts and the application of better solutions in the form of devices or methods that meet new requirements, unarticulated needs or existing market needs. Beyond this sustaining innovation, however, is the concept of disruptive innovation, which “creates a new market by applying a different set of values, which ultimately (and unexpectedly) overtakes an existing market”.

The difference between change and disruption is the level of impact. If you improve a product or service delivery to benefit customers, you have the makings of a successful business. If you want to disrupt your market, however, you need to create a solution or develop people that offer outstanding services to customers other than the norm.

It is against that backdrop that we consider the perspective that human resources management has been taken to a totally new level as the world is going into a brilliant period of HR technology arrangements. Consequently, the fast-changing business environment along with the emergence of disruptive technology has placed an urgent demand on organisations and HR leaders to improve business performance through innovation and people. And it is on that account that dramatic innovations and improvements are required in bringing about organizational learning, leadership, people engagement, maintaining employee performance and retaining best-fit employees in the organization.

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Below are a few learnings from Akshay Batra, managing director at Dr. Batra's Positive Health Clinic, and India's first trichologist (hair specialist) to be accepted into The Trichological Society of London.

1. Ensure you have the right culture fit.

Practically every employee is going to encounter a major shift or change at work at some point. Hence, skills must be relearned constantly, especially with fast-moving technology. The company will only thrive if employees are willing and eager to make those transitional shifts, despite the challenges. For instance, to give him the confidence that his team will adjust to whatever the future brings, Batra "handpicks" the doctors working in his clinics to ensure they embrace a culture of change.

2. Be a presence.

Employees can easily feel overwhelmed by a rapid onslaught of change. Ambiguity at the top makes the situation worse. Batra explained that he makes his presence known to his employees as a way to keep them moving forward. "I lend myself to energize the team. In the healthcare system it is very important for everybody to be value driven, to understand the right direction, to make sure that the patients are kept at the top of everything we do," elaborated Batra. "And of course to keep them energized."

3. Embrace technology.

Ironically, the best way to get employees to remove fear and develop technological skills is through the use of technology. Batra utilizes as many means of technology as he can get his hands on for communication, initial training and retraining. Among his different formats were webinars, group chats, emails and podcasts. "They can be done very easily to reach out to people," he stated. From the foregoing, it is clear that disruptive technology isn’t a bad thing. There is unprecedented opportunity to break up hierarchies and allow greater empowerment so that people’s talents can be harnessed. Disappearance of routine tasks allows better network access, empowerment and analytics. Rapid changes will also give organisations and individuals the opportunity to enjoy a better future.

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