Upskilling is getting more traction nowadays. There is an increasing demand for identifying and developing people skills. The tad bit outdated, yet still relevant maxim ‘Hire for culture, train for skill’ is getting more and more relevant with many tech skills emerging on the surface as a necessity. Smart organizations should be up/reskilling people more strategically, navigating both long-term career growth and daily experiences, while ensuring alignment to corporate goals.

When it comes to designing the future of work, one size fits none. Discovering success isn’t about a hybrid model or offering remote work options. Individuals and organizations are looking for more freedom. The freedom to choose the work model that makes the most sense. The freedom to choose their own values. And the freedom to pursue what matters most. We reached out to successful leaders and thought leaders across all industries to glean their insights and predictions about how to create a future that works.

As a part of our interview series called “How Employers and Employees are Reworking Work Together,” we had the pleasure to interview Nena Dimovska.

Nena Dimovska, Head of People success at Semos Cloud, is committed to reimagining people experience with HR technology. A PhD Candidate in Organizational Science and Leadership, she is exploring the exciting world of rewards & recognition, as an effective instrument in improving people experience in the digital workplace.

Thank you for making time to visit with us about the topic of our time. Our readers would like to get to know you a bit better. Can you please tell us about one or two life experiences that most shaped who you are today.

Thank you for having me! I’m very pleased to share my viewpoint on this important topic. I can’t pin down one or two life experiences but on the top of my mind, I’d share a lesson learned from my childhood. My parents have always encouraged me to try new hobbies and explore my talents. As a result, in addition to primary school, I enrolled in a music school, which was a significant commitment.

My strict, ‘old-school’ professor declared me to have “natural talent” and encouraged me to perform in a public recital. Months before the recital, our music school was bustling with excitement. Students would stroll tiredly through the corridors, biting their nails as they waited in line to practice on the finest pianos, rehearsing intonation and rhythm methodically. But not me, because I was ‘so talented’. As was to be expected, I failed on the day of the recital, realizing that my talent didn’t make me any better than any other kid performing. I was complacent and overconfident, and as a result, I’m very sure I gave the group’s worst performance.

That humbling event taught me that everything great requires hard effort, dedication, and sacrifice. It isn’t enough to be gifted. Talent is the frosting on the cake, but it isn’t the cake in and of itself. The story doesn’t end with me having a lightbulb moment and becoming a professional pianist at the age of 12. I became aware of the time commitment required, but I also chose to spend time with my friends over hours of piano practice. However, I did well in music school and developed a strong interest in classical music and dance as a result. I didn’t quit because of my mother, who was constantly pushing, coaching, and forcing me to practice the same tunes again and over (luckily, we had the most understanding neighbors).

And that was my other life-changing lesson. When you’re young and inexperienced, you need the occasional shove from an authoritative figure. You can accomplish much more if you have someone who believes in you and won’t let you quit because you’re bored, tired, or lazy. Having my mum serve that role was a blessing in itself, which radically helped my future development.

Let’s zoom out. What do you predict will be the same about work, the workforce and the workplace 10–15 years from now? What do you predict will be different?

We’ve seen a lot of changes in the last several years. To begin with, there have been significant economic changes, stock market booms, low interest rates, massive investments in the IT industry, the arrival of cryptocurrency/blockchain to the mainstream, 5G telecommunications, electric vehicles, and extensive digital transformation. Furthermore, we are still amid a Covid-19 pandemic, so I find it too optimistic to assume that anything has been stabilized yet. Everything we take for granted now will certainly change, or at the very least alter. Nonetheless, there are a few things that are more resistant to change than others, and I would like to mention the following:

Purpose, connection, and feelings/emotions are all crucial to people. I may be wearing my pink glasses when I say this, but I do not think people will ever abandon their dependency on others or their need to be a part of something bigger than themselves. I want to believe that the future will continue to be a place where we will be co-dependent in the creation of exquisite products, services, and cultures, while also performing professions that provide us sheer joy, excitement, and a better tomorrow while also bringing us closer together.

Then, there is the current workplace trend of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DI&B), which I believe is here to stay. It is something that is crucial to Semos Cloud culture’s success, thus it is ingrained in our core values. We attempt to incorporate the DI&B mantra into everything we do, while cultivating a culture where people can be themselves and contribute to the best of their abilities. Our stakeholder system is fundamentally diverse, and we need to have a team that understands, represents and respects all cultures.

On the other end of the spectrum, I believe most things we know will change or at least evolve, starting from:
How teams are functioning. With social changes in mind, I believe we will rely more on smaller, autonomous, flexible teams with distributed authority — empowered employees co-joined depending on skills capacity/relatedness. It’s also worth noting that asynchronous, remote teamwork is irreversible. Company culture does not exist solely inside the confines of the office. In line with the DI&B trend, organizations that have talents across the world and sustain global, remote communities will prevail. I hope that the multi-cultural company that offers people vision, purpose and clear guidance will be the new norm.

The focus then shifts to technology. Everyone’s work, including deskless workers, will inevitably be entwined with powerful, intelligent technology. I believe that the technological skills gap will be a significant challenge for businesses.
Professional development and upskilling will no longer be optional. It is not surprising that technological dexterity and upskilling could exceed experience and/or formal education. Digital abilities, as well as creative and analytical thinking, will be required for future work. A fixed set of abilities will no longer be able to add value for an extended period. To adapt to the ever-changing environment, people must always be aware and ready to improve, study, boost their competency levels, or add a new skill set. On the plus side, we have innovative learning experience platforms, eLearning technology, augmented/virtual reality tools, AI-coaching, advanced learning discovery, and much more at our disposal to help us achieve our ambitious growth goals.

The talent market will become more competitive than it has ever been, putting the spotlight on recruiters who must compete for talent in a wild market. As a result, recruiting talent will no longer be “HR’s KPI,” but a demanding strategic challenge. To let data speak: in Q3 2021, there were 15,7 million job openings and 4,4 million people have voluntarily left their jobs; unemployment in the EU dropped to 6,3% (in Germany even below 4%); in Q2 2021, at one point one could find more Recruiter vacancies advertised on LinkedIn (near 365,000) compared to Software Engineer vacancies (near 342,000); another LinkedIn research argued that “Comparing January to June 2021 to the same six-month period in 2020, we see a nearly 3x increase in recruiter jobs posted. When we look at June 2021 vs. June 2020, there are almost 7x more recruiter jobs posted.”

What advice would you offer to employers who want to future-proof their organizations?

Work is evolving fast and unpredictable. Each generation entering the workforce brings in new expectations and demands, but also fresh talents and opportunities. Companies are currently struggling to hire and keep employees, but not all businesses and organizations are equally affected. Those with a less traditional structure, which experimented with hybrid organization models prior to the pandemic, and invested more in developing company culture, appear to be in a better position. That also sums up the path to future-proofing. People place a high value on the time they invest in businesses, therefore the challenge is to make that time more meaningful to them. Purpose and meaning can be found in opportunities to grow personally and professionally, as well as in aligning your personal values with those of the company.

One strategy to future-proof your company is by honing your people programs around recognition and gratitude. It’s utterly empowering for people to get a simple ‘thank you’ for a job well done, to help them understand the impact made not only for themselves but also for their team and company, while fully recognizing the value the bring. The recognition and rewards part of the benefits package works excellent when companies allow their people to really pick the benefits they care about. For some, it could be a weekend in the spa, for some a gift card and for others, an opportunity to participate in a charity program they care for. Either way, it should be the people’s choice. Furthermore, it’s important to note that there is no one-size-fits-all program. That’s why investigating your people’s pulse, keeping abreast of industry trends, and repeatedly making improvements is vital. To sum up, companies need to plan and invest in the workplace culture not reactively, or when crisis strikes, but dedicate resources to consistently stay attuned to the state of their people and ensure all benefits are aligned to what people care about.

Another good strategy is to pay attention to, and invest in People Experience technology that is fit for your organization; whether that would be anything from the incredible VR tools, talent intelligence systems, or AI powered HR tech. There are amazing people experience platforms including wellbeing tools, learning experience, feedback, survey or listening tools to pick up your people’s sentiment and their productivity/happiness.

Another tactic may be to reinvent your People (HR) Team. Now that they have a seat at the table, being included in the top-notch strategically important matters such as remote/hybrid work, safety, critical policies, budget planning, people health & wellbeing, etc., this function has to evolve to respond to the new reality; where the People Team is ‘full-stack’ and includes capacity in the line of: consultants, PM, leadership, professional service delivery, technology enthusiasm, and much more. Last but not the least, companies must invest in their people’s professional development.

What do you predict will be the biggest gaps between what employers are willing to offer and what employees expect as we move forward? And what strategies would you offer about how to reconcile those gaps?

A number of gaps that weren’t previously considered have an impact on the current status of work. There’s growing number of people who inspect the company’s commitment to sustainability, positive environmental practices and its vouched for values/purpose. Many companies have already set-up their strategies around sustainability practices, and I believe that will no longer be seen as a perk, but rather a standard.

A challenge that will remain is the varied expectations across generations, not only on the side of care for sustainability, but even more basic requirements like compensation, business hours and development paths. One way to reconcile these gaps is to embody high-quality rewards and recognition programs. In Semos Cloud, we have a client that based their people R&R program around company values, among which are sustainability and innovation. This truly gets the transformation going, as people start to see in what manner their teammates are rewarded for starting the conversation on environmental issues, diversity and inclusion, or innovation and they also ask themselves how they can contribute. The employee engagement increased drastically, and at the same time, people truly started emphasizing the company values in their day-to-day chatter. The best takeaway for me here is that change doesn’t have to come just from the top, but companies can set up a welcoming environment which gives employees the tools to initiate the innovation/ changes from within the organization.

Whatever discrepancy there might be between the people and companies, it’s critical to listen to the ‘voice of the people’. There isn’t one universal solution, as we don’t employ the very same group of people, nor have an identical culture. A winning strategy in reconciling these gaps would be one that is customized, tailored to meet your people’s needs and expectations. Once again, to be a lot more efficient and get the right people data/feedback, companies should rely on sophisticated survey tools, feedback tools that enable each team-member to (anonymously) provide feedback and contribution. By asking the right questions, listening, analyzing real data and giving a chance for participation in the strategy creation, you would gain people’s greater commitment to its execution.

We simultaneously joined a global experiment together last year called “Working From Home.” How will this experience influence the future of work?

No matter when the pandemic ends, we can be certain that changes which took place are here to stay. Primarily, I’d refer to the flexible workspace arrangements. Not just work-from-home, but rather work-from-anywhere.

That change influences not just the workplace, but society in general. We’ll be hearing more and more discussion about the digital nomads, new developmental opportunities for smaller towns, now once again filled with young people who previously moved away for work. Further along, that also brings in the question of altering the labor laws, adding new contractual obligations for both companies and people, diverse leadership approach, more freelance work, increased focus on data protection, safety, health, and wellness benefits, etc. And the negative impact from this pandemic is far from over. It’s believed that workplace wellbeing and psychological health will grow at a yearly rate of 9.8% over the next 5 years; and it’s reasonable to assume that 40% of people are using some kind of psychological health or coaching benefits.
This also means diminishing the clear-but borderline between work and private life, which is not necessarily positive. Working from the office or the beach is incomparable. Nevertheless, what truly makes a difference is having the option to choose a work environment that suits you best. That’s what I see as the biggest driver of change, people’s right to choose. We’re close to a state where large part of the workforce is in full control of their surrounding and the comfort it provides. It’s hard to make assumptions how everything will work out long-term, but currently, I see a truly great opportunity for everyone to evolve the nature and definition of work and when possible, distance it from the unpleasant factors like commute and background noise, thus fully focusing on the productivity and satisfaction increase.

We’ve all read the headlines about how the pandemic reshaped the workforce. What societal changes do you foresee as necessary to support a future of work that works for everyone?

Workforce in general needs more appreciation and the Great Resignation following the Covid-19 pandemic proves that. For far too long, people have been left blindsided on their role in the company, and the value they give. Whether by accident or intentionally with an objective to cut costs, it wasn’t until recently that feedback and annual reviews turned from a frightening tool for micromanagement to a positive solution for empowering and developing people. The largest societal change I see happening is in people’s demand to make work more meaningful.

Many jobs were unfairly deemed as less worthy, and for too long companies communicated that people were easily replaceable. Showing gratitude for a job well done completely shifts that perspective. Every role matters, every person matters. While some skills sets are harder to find/develop/maintain than others, it takes everyone’s joint efforts to succeed in a business. This synergy, per se, leads toward greater demand for flexibility, feedback, and appreciation in the workplace, which some companies struggle with.

The Covid-19 pandemic made us all painfully aware about the formerly “undisputed” rules’ fragility. Work is less bound by the actual place of work, working hours are altered with more shifts, and many more habits are being brought into question. Although some changes aren’t comfortable for neither people nor companies, yet they prove that nothing is set in stone. Logically, people start to question what else can be done about the formerly fixed regulations that could enhance the workplace, bring in more flexibility, and ultimately innovation. Therefore, I believe soon we will see drastic changes to the general outlook toward work itself, and even more appreciation towards innovation in the workplace.

On another note, looking at the broader situation as an added feature to the continuing lagging problem of the pandemic is the sense of insecurity brough by the global inflation. For example, a commodity one would like to purchase yesterday is a lot more expensive or not even available today, which adds on this sense of uncertainty. So, work will be a place where people will need to find predictability, safety and security, and companies will have to work hard to earn people’s trust.

What is your greatest source of optimism about the future of work?

I see a lot of positive movement, already mentioned. The fact that more and more people choose a job around the question of what values/purpose the company promotes is a good start. Corporate social responsibility and sustainability practices aren’t a new concept, however the manner and speed at which they squeeze into everyday workplace discussion is a great source of optimism to me. Vast corporate resources are now invested into making this world a better place, and a lot of that stems from initiatives started by the employees. That’s quite empowering and brings much hope for tomorrow.

An additional point is the plethora of possibilities being opened up with workplace digitalization and automation. Companies are investing more and more in digital skills and educating their workforce. That’s a way towards gradually putting an end to most menial jobs, while at the same time empowering every segment of the workforce to take roles they find meaningful. As an example, recruitment will be supported by talent intelligent systems and AI to better source, match, predict performance and select the right talents for your company. I see more and more people reinventing themselves later on in their careers, and that’s something I don’t think could happen without all the digital knowledge available at a click of the finger. I’m noticing flexible work and hybrid working models going mainstream, as well as jump in wages. I guess more companies are realizing that profit is not reduced if you pay your people more (and more fairly). Last but not the least, my greatest source of optimism is with the entrepreneurial, tech-savvy, fast-paced Generation Z and Alpha. I am eager to see what they’ll bring to the workplace.

Our collective mental health and wellbeing are now considered collateral as we consider the future of work. What innovative strategies do you see employers offering to help improve and optimize their employee’s mental health and wellbeing?

Psychological health and wellbeing are areas I’m genuinely passionate about, and can’t stress enough how glad I am they are talked about more often nowadays. The main challenge I see now is that while psychological health issues are addressed more often, it’s still a challenging topic for those who need help the most. Also, there are limits to how far a company can go in addressing people’s psychological health issues while respecting their need/boundary for privacy. I believe that a healthy way forward would be to act on encouraging behaviors that can help most people before any issue comes up. Work takes a large amount of our time, and we should emphasize the importance of nurturing a positive, engaging, and challenging environment into our overall well-being.

Some of my favorite examples are around companies investing time and resources to promote healthy habits by encouraging fitness among their teams. That’s something we see more and more often, and we can be certain it helps to encourage a healthier lifestyle. Nonetheless, less frequent, and just as impactful are companies that openly talk about psychological health issues, hire internal/external help for their people, and intentionally take steps to prevent people’s burning out.

Following the practices of creating a culture of appreciation, it’s important to promote wellbeing and psychological health initiatives across the organization, not exclusively via top-to-bottom approach; thus, to fully engage people, and let them experience its impact. Here, change management takes a leading role, and it takes a strong expertise to not only execute, but also properly communicate the change impact/importance. Furthermore, wellbeing is a topic too sensitive to be approached without a clear end goal. It takes time for people to get used to newly created opportunities in the workplace, which makes it vital to invest plenty of time, as these initiatives provide long-term results.

It seems like there’s a new headline every day. ‘The Great Resignation’. ‘The Great Reconfiguration’. And now the ‘Great Reevaluation’. What are the most important messages leaders need to hear from these headlines? How do company cultures need to evolve?

The most important message here is that there is an ongoing change, and it’s time for the leaders to step up their game and start reorganizing their companies’ structures to fit the innovative, flexible arrangements. While there is a lot of talk about The Great Resignation in a somewhat worrisome tone, I’ve seen plenty of companies, especially in the more agile tech environments that are seeing it as a new opportunity for growth.

One such example I’d proudly share is Semos Cloud. During this pandemic, we’ve grown more than 40 % in people count. Most of those acquired talents didn’t transition solely for a better remuneration; but got tired of their previous companies’ lack of flexibility, alignment, purpose, objectives, and failing to accept the new reality. Thus, such lack of support motivated these people to question whether that culture is the right place for them to grow. And here we’re talking about A+ talents, not mediocre people.

My personal take is that belonging shouldn’t be just a catchphrase in the workplace. There are always a plenty of opportunities with vast difference in the comp and benefits package. What can truly make a difference in tenure is the culture that’s not only talked about, but fully realized. It’s about genuine care, passion, teamwork, selflessness, commitment, curiosity, agility (by the way, our company values) toward, between and inside your people. Sure, there can be plenty of mishaps in any organization, but letting people know that you actually got their back, and proving you want to see them grow, develop and succeed together with you, is something that creates/sustains a sense of belonging immune even to the Great Resignation.

Let’s get more specific. What are your “Top 5 Trends To Track In the Future of Work?” (Please share a story or example for each.)

  • Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging are being talked about more and more, with even new job titles starting to emerge, like Diversity or Culture & Belonging Officers. The conversation around diversity evolved from satisfying outdated legislatives to recognizing the true value it brings to a business. It’s becoming clear that only a diverse workforce can bring in the multitude of views necessary to thrive on innovation. According to a study by The University of Michigan, people hired on the basis of ‘diversity purpose’ can be seen as less qualified, and companies are embracing the notion that such hiring isn’t enough. Diversity brings plenty of intangible benefits such as better conflict resolution and increased confidence. With diverse teams, people learn to understand each other better, are more united toward the company’s purpose, and reduce conflicts. Furthermore, if people realize differences are celebrated, they’d be more prone to embrace their own unique qualities, express their ideas freely, become closer to others, and integrate better in the company. To let data speak: according to Deloitte research, 83% of millennials are more engaged when they believe their company embraces an inclusive culture; according to McKinsey research, top-quartile gender diversity companies are 15% more likely to have financial returns, above their national industry median. The top quartile of racial/ ethnic diversity companies is 35% more likely to have financial returns, above the national industry median. Few examples of enterprises with acknowledged diversity practices are: A) Marriott International who recently launched Serve 360 plan, where they invested 5million dollars to teach hospitality skills to women, people with disabilities, veterans and refugees. B) Accenture, oftentimes ranked within the top companies for diversity due to the gender representation within their workforce, and encouragement of inclusion for many different groups. They offer an outstanding diversity training to their people (awareness, management, and professional development. C) Sodexo, where it’s believed that if there is an optimal gender balance, people engagement increases by 4%, gross profit by 23% and brand image strengthens by 5%. Hence, 55% of all their team members, and 58% of their board of directors are women.
  • Hybrid/Remote Workplace probably doesn’t need a lot of explanation as it’s been all the rage for the last two years. Although, there needs to be a clear-cut distinction between hybrid, remote and flexible work. While all were previously a fancy perk of the tech companies, today they become a standard, and sometimes, the readiness to embrace them indicates the company’s health. Where I see a major space for improvement, and a potential trend, is around tech communications solutions for the better people experience. Keeping people engaged, productive and satisfied in a remote environment will remain a challenge, which leads to investing more in proper communications suites, and infrastructure that enables efficient remote operations. Another challenge/trend I see with remote work is trust or accountability. The Remote work comes along with culture of accountability i.e., not just doing things but how people do things. This includes increased transparency, better leadership, and empowering individuals. Once again, this can be done by having a technology tool at your hand that streamlines your communication efforts, offering feedback channels and using genuine people feedback to course correct if needed.
  • The Flat Organization in the hands of the Empowered People, yet another movement/trend I see happening, even prior to the pandemic and reaching faster momentum ever since. Horizontal organizational structures, empowered, independent teams with clear ownership tend to work better in our fast-changing environment. Their dynamic enables efficient communication based on new information, which is vital during the pandemic as new situations arise daily. I believe the future will show that independent, self-sustainable teams are more successful, even without the dangers of impending crisis, as they leave more room for individual approach and full usage of one’s talent and potential. What companies can do is to boost individual experience across the organization: generate genuine knowledge about people values; reduce bureaucracy and allow simple, flexible processes, personalize people’s career growth; build leadership capabilities that can support this organization.
  • Upskilling is getting more traction nowadays. There is an increasing demand for identifying and developing people skills. The tad bit outdated, yet still relevant maxim ‘Hire for culture, train for skill’ is getting more and more relevant with many tech skills emerging on the surface as a necessity. Smart organizations should be up/reskilling people more strategically, navigating both long-term career growth and daily experiences, while ensuring alignment to corporate goals. Furthermore, with lack of skilled talent on the market, we experience the development of cross-functional teams where specific skills are utilized across the organization. That momentum is something I believe will truly evolve the workplace we know today, with highly skilled employees leading projects throughout all the organizational levels. I’m seeing plenty enterprises launching projects to enable their people adapt to the new circumstances in an efficient manner. Such an example is Ericsson, which launched a digital platform to empower people to build digital skills and stay ahead of the curve. Now, a huge challenge here is how to motivate people to learn when they are already overloaded and burned-out from the pandemic, with traditional models dying out. Upskilling, reskilling is just another way to bridge the gap between capabilities, capacities, and cost, and should be holistic i.e., to happen everywhere in moments of need.
  • The company recognition and rewards program is pivotal in engaging and appreciating its people. Business structures complexities easily leave people disengaged and feeling irrelevant in the grand scheme of business. Nurturing culture of appreciation and recognizing individual and team accomplishments, as well as suitably rewarding them helps prolong people tenure, increase engagement and overall satisfaction. A fascinating part of the HR space, R&R is already incorporated in most successful enterprises (SAP, JTI, OMV, Shutterfly, to name a few), but just getting started to spread through the SMBs. The expectation of the current working generation is to provide value and get recognized for it. All rewards and recognition programs offer just that, finally closing the gap between employers and employees. To let data speak: organizations with the most sophisticated recognition practices are 12 times more likely to have strong business outcomes; 69% of people would work harder if they felt their efforts were better appreciated; there is 41% higher rates of customer satisfaction at companies that have implemented peer-to-peer recognition; 85% of HR Leaders say people recognition program has a positive effect on the company culture.

I keep quotes on my desk and on scraps of paper to stay inspired. What’s your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? And how has this quote shaped your perspective?

It’s a bit difficult for me to choose one. In fact, some of the good ones sound like such a cliché. ? I admire my husband’s motto which, in a nutshell is that the best things in life come after lots of hard work i.e., don’t come easy (note: not ‘things’ per se but feelings, accomplishments). For example, let’s say you want to enjoy the mountains, you’d experience the nature, scenery, scents much stronger if you hike, rather than take a ropeway, assuming there is one. I’m positive there’s something more to it, than just endorphin being released after exercising. Same goes to the feeling you’d get after completing a difficult project; the reward is sweeter if you put your sweat into it. Also, cooking your own food, rather than ordering from a restaurant — rarely the convenient choice, but you get the point. Here are few quotes I also find inspiring:

On humility, staying grounded and real, without getting lost in arrogance or pride: “Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose.” by Bill Gates

On accepting people as they are: “When somebody plays music, you listen, you just follow those sounds, and eventually you understand the music. The point can’t be explained in words because music is not words, but after listening for a while, you understand the point of it, and that point is the music itself. in the same way, you can listen to all experiences.” by Allan Watts

On living in the present moment: “The art of living is neither careless nor fearful clinging to the past. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, in regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive…The more a thing tends to be permanent, the more it tends to be lifeless.” by Allan Watts

“Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it.” by Marie Curie, the first women to ever win a Nobel Prize
On embracing change and making most of it:

“If solutions within the system are so impossible to find, then maybe we should change the system itself?” by Greta Thunberg, climate change activist

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He, she, or they might just see this if we tag them.

Hm… Another difficult one, here are few:

  • Ann Daniels, leadership and motivational speaker, a record-breaking polar explorer who was part of the first all-women’s team to sledge haul to the North and South Poles;
  • Dave Ulrich, professor, consultant, author and Global HR thought leader, who has written several books on HR’s strategic alignment to business process;
  • Eckhart Tolle, endorsed as one of the most inspiring and visionary spiritual teachers today;
  • Josh Bersin, one of my all-time favorite HR tech thinkers influencers. His research and work are indeed admirable;
  • Laszlo Bock, former SVP of People Operations in Google, interesting experience in the HR Tech Industry. I’d like to learn from a true practitioner in the field;
  • Linda Cruse humanitarian, leadership expert, author, and inspirational speaker, experienced working in some of the most challenging places on earth;
  • Melinda Gates, powerful leadership figure, due to her efforts to support areas of society in desperate need of help or remodeling;
  • Sadhguru, a contemporary mystic delivering the profound science of yoga for people’s material and spiritual well-being;
  • Sid Sijbrandij, the CEO of Gitlab or
  • Wendy Nice Barnes, the Chief People Officer at Gitlab as I admire their company transparency and culture.

Our readers often like to continue the conversation with our featured interviewees. How can they best connect with you and stay current on what you’re discovering?

I’d encourage all people experience and tech enthusiasts to check our work at or connect with me via my LinkedIn profile:

Thank you for sharing your insights and predictions. We appreciate the gift of your time and wish you continued success and good health.