Future Generali

How Future Generali India Life Insurance kick-started its transformation process

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Ruchira

Originally Publisher At - https://hr.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/workplace-4-0/how-future-generali-india-life-insurance-kick-started-its-transformation-process/77405122

To address the required transformation at work, Future Generali India Life Insurance Company Limited (FGILI) adopted two broad segments to address with the changing paradigm. The core to both the segments is around its people.

 

 

As India tries to get back on its feet, one thing is for sure; it will not be business as usual. The global pandemic has jolted everyone to adopt a new work paradigm, thereby grabbing a slice of time from the future and imposing it on the present times.

How did FGILI kick-start the process of transformation?

To address the required transformation at work, Future Generali India Life Insurance Company Limited (FGILI) adopted two broad segments to address with the changing paradigm. The core to both the segments is around its people.

(a) Immediate Focus: Having a structured approach towards supporting employees as they shift into the new work routine.

(b) Resetting Future Way of Working: Designing people processes keeping in view the emerging business and customer requirements.

The instant focus of the company though remains to get the following three deliverables right and with an alacrity to be fully operational and have business continuity:

1. The health and wellbeing of employees is always top priority. It is paramount to keep empathy at the forefront while re-designing work and managing efficiency of people. Support from the leadership teams to achieve higher level of efficiency and productivity is key here.

2. FGILI ensured that it worked towards having the overall required infrastructure up and running to support everyday business i.e., refurbished office spaces and routine sanitisation; robust IT infrastructure with high bandwidth and integrated platforms to support remote working; prevent data and information security breaches.

3. Frequent multi-tiered two-way communication was sent to employees informing them about support extended and policy changes for seamless work-from-home (WFH) conditions.

What were the new rules for the new normal?

For “Immediate Focus” areas, it was important that the line of sight is not missed while business models, processes, and guidelines are being relooked at keeping in mind the need of the hour.

1. Rethinking Social Connections: Norms and practices have emerged across the organisation to connect with remote teams, either individually or collectively. E.g., the launch of employee programmes like the #DaysofOptimism campaign by the HR team brought a renewed focus on Care, Concern & Celebrations. The connects have become boundary-less and hierarchy-agnostic leading to a higher level of engagement and hence would require to be strengthened in the future too.

2. Seamless alignment of High-Tech with High-Touch: Key tech enablers are being identified and put into practice in sync with the life-journey of the employee. Never before has such a close-knit alignment and the urgency to use technology to augment human touch been demonstrated, i.e. from onboarding new associates, to reviews, to recognition etc. We are witnessing how beautifully the two can co-exist. An onboarding note sent digitally to a new team member has to be so personalized that she doesn’t feel your physical absence. Thoughtfulness in re-designing every aspect of a process is the key. The “Warriors of Change” initiative at FGILI became an intimate recognition platform, thanks to COVIDIAN times!

3. Agility as a way of life: An organisation should be agile in these testing times to be able to switch to new ways of operating while grasping emerging needs of customers and employees. This is a good time for employees to make themselves “agile-ready”. At FGILI, individual and team are part of multiple projects to rethink products/process/services to address the new requirements. A company has also to be cognisant of the fact that employees’ needs have intrinsically changed. The need to gauge employee sentiments is far higher; hence HR teams should be well equipped to train managers on how to do frequent check-ins with their team members without being macro-managers and/or be over-compensating.

What should be the way forward?

As we reset the approach to work life ahead, three elements are important to keep in mind:

1. Reimagining Workspace: The important element of a complete “come back” is catering to different segments of people: those working remotely, those with a physical presence and those who are 'hybrid' workers who alternate between remote and physical workspaces. Each group will have different requirements. Hence the new workspace will have to be designed to accommodate the needs of the hybrid working styles emerging in the current work environment. Plus, seating arrangements and shared spaces will have to be designed to address physical distancing norms.

2. Manager as the Change Agent: As has been the case earlier, a manager plays an important role in steering the thoughts, behaviours and actions of his/her team. Earlier, when meetings were held physically in the office, it was easy to spot non-verbal nuances and gauge employee sentiment. But in present times, how do we motivate team members and get them to collaborate long distance keeping in view varying needs/temperaments/work-styles. Also it is becoming evident that ability to strengthen “customer intimacy” would play a differentiating role in the new normal. Thus, managers will need to lead and demonstrate empathy first with their teams and through them with customers.

3. Need to redefine performance measurement & talent: In order to deliver customer value during disruption, performance goals need tobebroken down into byte sized measurable actions for all functions. Talent needs and competencies have to be re-assessed. Companies would increasingly look for talent with understanding of managing complex problems (someone who can steer through V/U/W shaped business scenarios), has the ability to work in a multifarious environment, someone who has originality of thoughts, has the capability to lead a team through crises situations, and has higher emotional resilience. Importantly, they would need to be social influencer while at the same time being someone who is concerned about the society at large.

It is prime time for reimaging and rethinking the people agenda.

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