For the Israeli Mossad, the country’s intelligence agency, it’s called the 10th man: If nine people in a critical meeting arrive at the same conclusion, the 10th person must disagree, no matter how improbable that line of thinking. For the CIA, it’s the red cell, a group of contrarian thinkers who are urged to challenge conventional wisdom. For the U.S. and Canadian armed forces, it’s called red teaming.
It works for old, iconic corporations and innovative disruptors. It works for nonprofits and hedge funds. And it can work for your company too, if you let it,” consultant and former journalist Bryce Hoffman writes in Red Teaming.
There were no formal red teams – just a no-nonsense CEO. But for many organizations, creating a formal team – whether ad hoc or permanent – makes sense to ensure critical thinking is unleashed.
Writing those responses down is important, too, because it forces people to ‘own’ their answers. It is far easier to equivocate when people are just blurting out the first thing that comes to mind. This method also forces people to pre-commit to an idea and not modify their thinking based on what they hear from the rest of the group,” he explains.
This book captures the best ideas of this burgeoning new movement.
The event was attended by senior-level representatives from both the private and public sector, as well as educators. The results of the discussion were resounding: Canadian businesses and postsecondary institutions need to work more closely than ever to train the highly skilled employees of tomorrow and retain top-tier talent.
The government of Ontario demonstrated a strong commitment to experiential learning when they allocated $190-million over three years to securing workplace opportunities for students through the Career Kick-Start Strategy. Work with universities and colleges to find qualified, dedicated talent.
I have heard from employers who fear they will lose employees to higher-paying opportunities after investing resources on them; I encourage these individuals to reconsider this perspective. I know a young professional who is a champion for a bank he left upon being recruited for a data analyst position at a ministry with a higher salary and more direct-reports. Even if this talent does leave, they will be an ambassador for your organization.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) anticipates significant change in the labour market with impending technological innovation; 9 per cent of jobs may be at risk of elimination and 32 per cent may find their job duties changing. Offer workshops or seminars within your organization to help employees develop these skills and prepare themselves for the forthcoming knowledge economy.
Employees greatly appreciate when organizations are attuned to their professional growth. The Canadian Education & Research Institute for Counselling (CERIC) recently funded the publication of a playbook for career management entitled Retain and Gain, which emphasizes the importance of supporting employee growth. The playbook asserts that highly engaged employees are three times more likely to do something good for their organization. Show employees their value to your organization.
Alternatively, consider establishing a company-wide day of service where everyone contributes. The 2015 Millennial Report indicates that 70 per cent of millennials volunteered in the previous year and 69 per cent of millennial employees admitted that they would be inclined to make a donation if their organization offered to match part of it. In these times of sociopolitical unrest, there is a general increased appreciation for organizations and leaders who do good. Set a good example for prospective talent.
One of the first place to grow this is in the area of sovereign industrial capabilities for defense. For example, this was made very clear by the new French president, Emmanuel Macron, who will prioritize strategic investments having a dual impact, being defense AND civil or commercial. It is time for politicians, Liberals or others, after 50 years of complacency, to grow up and stop complaining about the US whilst implicitly doing nothing to make sure our advanced graduates in engineering and science stay here. In other words, stop being a colony.