Birthdays are a time to celebrate, to both reflect on what we've accomplished and look forward to where we want to be. And who doesn’t love a party theme? As Singapore celebrates its 52nd year of independence, its theme is #OneNationTogether. National Day Parade, the organisation which organises the celebrations, explains the two parts of the theme: “‘One Nation’ is to remind Singaporeans that regardless of origin and background, we belong as one people and one nation. It encourages Singaporeans to harness our diversity and to leave no one behind as we strive towards an even brighter future. ‘Together’ emphasises the importance of unity in times of uncertainty and challenges ahead and represents a call-to-action for all Singaporeans to overcome the odds together.”
Freakonomics’ host, Stephen J Dubner, always has a unique spin on the topics he covers. As I listened, Koch told the story of his family immigrating from The Netherlands. Koch told the story of taking over his father’s business as his health declined. Then Koch said this: “What I love is innovation, finding new ways to create value.” That line has stayed with me. At 81, Koch no longer needs to work (his net worth is an estimated US$50 billion) but the reason he gets up in the morning is to create value. Me too.
This month, we at HCLI return to one of our flagship programmes—the Singapore Business Leaders Programme. For six days, a cohort of leaders about to take a regional general manager role meet and discuss topics centred around the theme of Globalised Leaders for Asia. Many of the articles for this month will also align with this theme and aim to showcase best practices for how Asian leaders can take on regional or global positions, why an entrepreneurial mind-set will prepare leaders for the uncertain future of work and what lessons can we learn from seasoned leaders.
This month we’ll be joining the conversation about the future. Grab's offering driverless ‘robo-car’ beta testing near one-north MRT station in Singapore while research outfits are looking at the future: automation, outbound travel, smartphones, marketing, healthcare, and digital banking just to name a few. Everyone is part of the discussion. Here at HCLI, we’re also looking at how will HR cope the future of work. We’re also asking broader questions like:
Last year, we focused a lot on the future of work and how automation will affect the workforce. We shared our thoughts around what leaders need to do to upskill their team as well as what individuals should do to ensure they are future-ready.
In an interview a few months back, a senior leader at an HR advisory firm commented that as HR professionals, we would benefit from remembering that we are in control of the future, of the types of technology we will use.