Sunday, June 16, 2024
CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Agenda - Old School Making a Comeback

CEO Agenda

Old School Making a Comeback

I am proudly old school, and not alone. There are many more of us out there. Underground, we have become the alternative subculture. Not to defy change but preserve what we know works. Resistant to superficial innovation, just for the fake of it and a preference for enduring qualities, we are neither old fashioned nor old. We simply know what is best for business, society, and ourselves. 

The wisdom of the crowd should not be underestimated. Attuned to what serves them best, they too, are gravitating intuitively to old school. As the Managing Director of a recruitment firm, I hear the latest insights and views. Old school is a needed comeback. 

Not the return of the fax. 

Old school no longer equates to being behind the times. In today’s fastest-moving world, yesterday’s latest is easily today’s outdated. I am referring to restoring our precious human attributes, abilities, and nuances. The parts of our personage contributing to continual evolvement. These old-school qualities ensure we don’t become deskilled and past our used-by date. They safeguard the values sustaining us as stable individuals, especially during such times of shifting grounds. 

Deep down, we all wanted a change.

The pandemic was the catalyst, elevating personal purpose and values. In a recent survey, 65% said the pandemic made them rethink work and the place it held in their lives. Dramatically changing the workplace status quo, a new will of the world emerged.  

Embracing the drama for change, we ditched any semblance of corporate restraints, conformity, talk, tone, or wear. With a dash of privilege, emperor-like in our new clothes, we proudly brandished our latest rites and sprouted our learned silver linings. We were all in it together until we weren’t.

Floating amid the vessel of flexibility, lost ties, diminished structures, loosened disciplines, and principles, we are exposed. The global pandemic wasn’t enough. It was just the start.   

 The universe’s pandora’s box 

The U.K., Australia and the U.S. have had their share of leadership discontent. The war in Ukraine, human rights issues in China, the highest recorded inflation rates in Australia since 1990 and more. The passing of Queen Elizabeth, our first global energy crisis, heat waves in Europe and monsoonal flooding in Pakistan.  

If that wasn’t enough, we are all poised for a recession. Continued uncertainty is guaranteed.  

Too much change and shifting grounds 

In a new work experience study by communications company BCW, job security is now identified as the number one priority. It rings old-school familiar. And the ability to choose where you work? That came in at 51. Our wants are changing again. 

It is time to put our clothes back on 

Our self-awareness is back in check, reality square in view, knowing what is good for us. Like the parable, we no longer need to be fearful of authority, but equally, self-deception does us no favours. The gifts of our recent experiences are in sync with our old school values; transparency and honesty, like the child, ‘he hasn’t anything on’, and authenticity, being comfortable in who we are. 

Being in the presence of other humans, face to face too seems reminiscent of 2019 old school. Undoubtedly, workplace flexibility is here to stay but to hold onto all that is innately good for us; we need human touch and real connections. Virtual reality, but it’s not actual reality. 

As for emojis, they have become our universal language, great for connectivity, but cannot replace genuine emotions. We risk losing the power of vocabulary. How to identify our feelings if we don’t know or forget their name? Our old school preference is eye contact, facial expressions, listening intently, being present and to pass the tissue box. 

Authenticity and transparency

Somehow authenticity has been staked as a new claim. It has always been there for us old-school types. In a face-to-face meeting, the full body language disclosure, whether we like it or not, has authentic subconscious messaging. The concept of bringing your whole self to work, we invented that! Honesty and integrity? Also, ours. 

Transparency? It’s referred to as calling a spade a spade in our language. Overlay it with responsibility and duty in delivering messages or ‘truths’ that you sometimes don’t want to hear but are good for you and the business. Authentic leadership.

The new world is emerging, and we have the ability, if not the duty, to make it a better place for everyone. An old-school yet new-fashioned sentiment. The most important question is what to hold from the past and what to let go of. A question to be posed for businesses, society, and individuals alike. 

Written by Roxanne Calder.
Have you read?
How Sales Automation Wins More Customers and Boosts Revenue.
The 5 qualities of a good people manager by Dr. Dominic Mcloughlin.
The Challenging Prospect of China’s Private Sector by Chan Kung.
The Power of Data Analytics for Tourism Ministries and their Industry Partners by Rudy Cardona Ph.D.
5 Best Practices for Leading Team Meetings That Successfully Implement Change by Dr. Dawn-Marie Turner.

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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Agenda - Old School Making a Comeback

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Roxanne Calder
Roxanne Calder, the author of ‘Employable – 7 Attributes to Assuring Your Working Future’ (Major Street $29.95), is the founder and managing director of EST10 – one of Sydney’s most successful administration recruitment agencies. Roxanne is passionate about uncovering people’s potential and watching their careers soar.

Roxanne Calder is an opinion columnist for the CEOWORLD magazine. You can follow her on LinkedIn.