What's Next CEOs, including Linda Findley Kozlowski; Albert Bourla, Jessie Woolley Wilson; Ali Ghodsi

Summary List Placement

In May of last year, Insider interviewed CEOs about how the pandemic was changing their businesses in the short and long term.

Companies had only just pivoted to new workflows and technologies that would change — permanently in many cases — the way they would engage with customers. Vaccines were a distant hope at that time.

COVID-19 was the only story then, and George Floyd’s murder had not yet happened.  But the pandemic had already highlighted the societal inequities that predated it, and the groundwork was already laid for companies and institutions to face the hard questions about their commitments to change.

Now, nearly a year after our first “What’s Next,” we’ve asked chief executives from a variety of companies to tell us what role the physical office will play moving forward, how their leadership approach has changed, and what steps they’ve taken to address inequities in society and in their organizations.

There are two takeaways that shine through. First, while remote work has not been disastrous — and has gone pretty well actually — most CEOs want to see a return to office life. Yes, it will be different, with an emphasis on safety and flexibility. But they still consider the office an important driver of culture and collaboration.

Which leads to the second theme: CEOs know more about their employees now than at any time in history. Work and home have blurred, personal circumstances have been on display, and DEI deficiencies have been exposed.

That insight into talent — and what it takes to drive sustained growth and positive change — is taking companies in uncharted directions. The opportunity should not be squandered: CEOs have a chance to forge a future of work that’s truly diverse, flexible, and transformative.

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Source:: Business Insider

      

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WHAT’S NEXT: CEOs from 38 companies tell Insider how they are approaching the return to the office

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