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Richard Gluyas reports in Business, The Australian, on a panel discussion with NAB Chairman Ken Henry covering changes on the way in the nation’s workplaces. Andrew Thorburn, NAB Chief Executive contributes in a very open manner. Andrew, ” People will be left behind unless they are active participants and update their skills.” At the heart of these discussions is the need for transformational leadership as it was made clear the bank was exposed to legacy and emerging industries through it’s lending activities. Andrew, ” I think there’s going to be very significant displacement from certain industries and professions in the next five to 10 years in Australia.”
The view is if staff become passive then they will be left behind. When workers become intrenched in their roles they can become reluctant towards change. Everyone should develop a plan for themselves when organising for the future and being aware that they will be required to accept change. Andrew Thorburn told the panel he was moved by how artificial intelligence and machine learning will change the way we do business. At the Microsoft conference he attended and which hosted a delegation of around 50 CEOs form around the world, there was an even split between these executives who felt technical disruption would be a net positive for job creation and those who saw it differently.
On the topic of job displacement Hewlett Packard CEO, Meg Whitman was blunt in her warning to the forum. ” Jobs will be lost, jobs will evolve and this revolution is going to be ageless, it’s going to be classless and it’s going to affect everyone. ” Andrew Thorburn believes communication of these types of changes requires a conversation with those involved. A common plan accompanied by a set of values and clear strategy delivered by leaders is how they should be communicated. Andrew, ” It doesn’t happen by email, it happens by conversation with people, face to face.” At this point in time there is no negative response to the outlook and the new pathways being created. Change is underway and the marketplace appears set to support it.