Advice for new managers from London Tech Week

03 June 2019 -

TechnologyHow to future-proof your management career in a world where technology is changing

As Chief Technology Officer at Direct Line Group, Sarah Greasley has a role that is always changing. Thanks to continuing digital evolution, it’s something that many of us will have to get used to. Ahead of speaking at London Tech Week, here are her top five tips for managers:

1. Understand technology

Technology is changing your world in a way that you cannot imagine. Technology will not just automate the jobs that you and your teams do, but it will reshape ways of working, your company and your whole industry. People who do not understand what these advances can do will be at a disadvantage. We see this happening in the motoring industry with the creation of autonomous cars, which will increase the safety on our roads, and change the risks associated with driving.

2. Value diversity

Build diversity into your DNA. Recognise the value of diversity in your teams, in your products and in your company. As we move to a more customer-centric world, understanding all your customers will become a source of competitive advantage.

If you want to know more about the importance of equality and different working styles, the CMI has published a report about Delivering Diversity.

3. You win or you learn

This advice comes from our new CEO, and while it may sound a bit like something from Game of Thrones, the message is that we should not be afraid of failure, provided we learn from it. Not every initiative will succeed. Part of the challenge is knowing when to change what you are doing, take away learnings from it and put those learnings into changing an approach, product or initiative.

4. Be curious

Ask the ‘what if’ questions and the ‘why’ questions. Context will become a very large part of decision-making in the next few years. If technology takes away the black and white decisions, then the focus will be on the circumstances within which we make decisions. Asking the question ‘why’ enables us to understand the purpose or intent.

5. Build strong relationships

Build relationships across your teams and your extended teams, as well as up and down the organisation. Doing amazing things requires us to work together: every big programme I have been part of has worked because a lot of people were aligned across a common purpose.

The CMI provides training and qualifications for managers and leaders at all levels. Find out more here.

You can also become a member to access a wealth of resources to support you on your professional journey.

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