Three of the biggest challenges for kiwi business leaders

Gain insight from the data collected from a comprehensive survey of 11,000 global workers

Three of the biggest challenges for kiwi business leaders

Backing its commitment to a strong growth agenda in the New Zealand market, global workforce solutions leader, Mercer has appointed Andrew McKechnie to the newly created role, head of workforce solutions.

“Having someone on the ground that can actually really connect with clients and build those relationships, it was a no brainer,” said McKechnie. “Now more than ever it's really important to really leverage the expertise of the wider business by having someone on the ground.”

McKechnie, who took on the role in June told HRD it had been an “incredibly fulfilling eight weeks.” “I’m looking forward to harnessing Mercer’s local and global expertise to support New Zealand employers in addressing some of the biggest workforce challenges and opportunities.”

Mercer produces one of the most comprehensive global industry standard studies and has recently published the findings from this year’s global talent trends survey. The survey garnered responses from 11,000 workers, across 16 geographical markets and thirteen global industries and McKechnie said there are three challenges that stand out prominently for Kiwi businesses.

Read more: I went to my weakest employee and said I’ve got your back

“The first thing is about connecting with your people and being more relatable with your workforce,” said McKechnie. “Fully understanding what your employee and workforce drivers are, what the motivators are, what their aspirations are.”

“The second piece is working in partnership,” continued McKechnie. The report revealed that more than ever employees, would rather work with an organisation rather than for an organisation. “That shows the intensity and the importance of having to really work in partnership with your people,” said McKechnie.

“The third, which is really important, is building for employability,” said McKechnie. The data revealed that 98% of businesses aren’t confident they have the right skills and capabilities to meet future needs. “From a strategic planning perspective, ask yourself, what are the current skills and capabilities we have today and what do we need in the future? Now the key,” he continued, “is future needs has to be closely aligned to strategy and aspiration, and a lot of companies miss that bit.”

McKechnie’s career path has ben varied. A successful sales and business development career lead to a transition into human resources six years ago. “I look at sales, I look at the key components of relationship building and influencing change and getting things across the line, HR, in terms of the people mechanics is very, very similar. It's about building trust, it's about connectivity,” explained McKechnie.

Read more: Engaging staff in a meaningful way

McKechnie’s leadership style starts with the end in mind, he said leaders need to ask themselves, what’s the leadership legacy you want to leave behind?

“I always check in with myself and ask the questions, what is your leadership shadow? What do you want to be known for? Having mindfulness of that keeps you in pretty good stead around self-awareness and leadership style,” he said.

“I look at success for me as a leader and there’s three things that really stand out for me,” he continued. “Credibility, reliability, and relatability, and of course that must be underpinned with authenticity as well. Those three leadership traits create trust and if you’ve got trust all things are possible,” said McKechnie.

 

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