Chief executives will need to reimagine their business as the Covid-19 pandemic shapes the future of work.
That's the message from ServiceNow NZ country manager Kate Tulp commenting on the 2021 CEO of the Year finalists for the Deloitte Top 200 awards.
"The pandemic has absolutely had an impact on how CEOs operate going forward," said Tulp.
"The pandemic has shown we can rethink how and where work is done, and how we measure and deliver value."
Refining New Zealand's Naomi James, The Warehouse Group's Nick Grayston and Skellerup Holdings' David Mair have been named as finalists for the ServiceNow Chief Executive of the Year award.
Tulp said she was seeing a focus on employee wellbeing, engagement and retention increased dramatically in more annual reports.
"Engagement is absolutely top of mind and people realise that with the pandemic, you need to create an environment where your workforce can adapt easily, be healthy and thrive, with tools and systems that support and empower them."
Employee wellbeing is one of four key challenges facing leaders today, Tulp said.
She said digital transformation was something that needed to be front of mind for all leaders as both business model and technology disruption were happening at scale.
"Technology is both an enabler of more efficient business, and it also gives leaders the ability to transform business models entirely. Executive teams, and CEOs specifically, need to understand how technology can be leveraged to do both," Tulp said.
"If leaders don't, they might constrain an organisation's efficiency, but also business resilience, agility, and the ability to adapt. Technology gives you the insight to understand how to change, and the tools to create new and better ways of doing things."
Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, including sustainability, were also a top priority for leaders.
Tulp said it was a question of: How do you put your organisation into a position where you are innovating, contributing and leading?
"Organisations that fail to respond will quickly hit a dead end.
"The best executive teams are looking carefully at how to balance short-term performance goals with necessary investments in longer-term growth, like transforming to meet ESG requirements, market disruptions, and maintaining innovation."
Lastly, Tulp said, macroeconomic factors, including how a business competes globally, and whether you can adapt to changing priorities and circumstances (e.g. recent supply-chain disruptions) were top priorities for leaders.
"To succeed in the future, organisations need to be delivering exceptional experiences for both employees and customers. Approaching them in a symbiotic way will deliver benefits across the board, and adopting technology will be the crucial foundation to make it all come together," Tulp said.
ServiceNow Chief Executive of the Year finalists:
• Naomi James - Refining New Zealand
• Nick Grayston - The Warehouse Group
• David Mair - Skellerup Holdings
• The winners of the 2021 Deloitte Top 200 Awards will be announced virtually on Wednesday, March 2.