Globally competitive cultures drive productivity

by Cameron Edmond19 Sep 2013

Australia now officially lags behind its Asian counterparts in global competitiveness. Recent figures from the Institute for Management Development placed Australia 16th in the rankings for the most globally competitive economies, down more than 10 positions from 2010 when Australia placed in the top five countries in the world.

New research indicates it is business leaders, specifically those who focus on building long-term, constructive cultures that encourage global competition, which have the most significant impact on productivity; indeed, those leaders have seen productivity increase by as much as 43% over their counterparts who concentrate more on short-term goals. These long-term visionary leaders are also 55% more likely to have high influence on team motivation, Human Synergistics has revealed.

“The drive for short-term performance is on the rise – but it is incredibly damaging to longer term prospects,” Shaun McCarthy, chairman of Human Synergistics, said. “Our data demonstrates that only organisations with more constructive cultures, which are focused on longer term thinking, strategy and value creation, prosper in all economic climates.”


Key HR Takeaways
Having a long-term corporate vision has been recognised as a part of good leadership but this is the first time the link between creating a constructive culture inside an organisation, with the long-term commitment that involves, and realising sustainable productivity in an organisation has been proven with concrete data.

Human Synergistics suggested the traits these long-term visionaries hold:

  1. A commitment to effectiveness, not just results. Understanding that business numbers are lagging indicators.
  2. A desire to improve themselves/and the way they function at all levels i.e. "Are you good enough to be better?"
  3.  A real sense of purpose, beyond making money. Seeing the organisation as being a part of the wider community.
  4. Reflection- being the sort of person who analyses what has worked, and what hasn't in order to improve- includes self-reflection.
  5. Perspective - the ability to keep the needs of people and the needs of business in balance
  6. Good decision making ability and the strength to 'see decisions through'.
  7. Openness to learning and experimentation.
  8. Understanding that trust is essential for human systems to perform at a high level.
  9. Knowing that for people to be committed to a strategy they need to understand the strategy and the reasoning behind it.
  10. Understanding the link between motivation and performance – letting people see that their effort can make a difference.
  11. Emphasising organisational culture as the roadmap for long term sustainable performance.



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