INTERVIEW: Dr Anirudha Bansod, CEO, Post Fiji on employee culture and productivity

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Dr Anirudha Bansod, CEO of Post Fiji, will address the importance of managing a postal workforce correctly, especially in government-operated businesses in less-developed states (LDS) and small island developing states (SIDS), in his presentation at this year’s Parcel+Post Expo Conference.

What is your presentation about?
As we know, manual processes have dramatically switched to automated and electronic versions, with delivery being performed with tremendous speed, accuracy and efficiency. This change has greatly affected traditional postal products and services and has caused a massive decline. I, therefore, feel that urgent diversification of the postal business is absolutely necessary if it is to survive. Developed and developing nations have already taken this strategic direction in a timely manner and reformatted their businesses when they saw the effect that changing consumer behavior was having. However, LDS and SIDS are lagging behind in this regard. My presentation will help postal operations, especially in LDS and SIDS, to change the strategic direction of their traditional businesses to diversify for today’s world.

What will the audience learn?
The developing nations have already instigated dynamic strategies to improve their services in terms of enhancing business positioning, especially in the supply chain, logistics, launching new products and services, the upskilling of staff and management teams, and increasing their resources. However, LDS and SIDS are struggling because of financial resources, untrained staff, lack of expertise in the technology sector, and a shortage of resources for improving their diversification strategy. As well as having a desperate need for financial investment, these countries need a firm strategic direction to maintain the sustainability of their postal businesses. So this presentation will help LDS and SIDS change their way of thinking, develop a proactive methodology, and create a market-oriented strategy to make old postal services more consumer-oriented.

How can postal operators upskill their workforces?
This is one of the biggest challenges for the types of businesses I’ll be focusing on, because most of these postal operators are state-owned enterprises (SOE). Generally, the government workforce is accustomed to an easy life, but the challenges in today’s market are very diverse and dynamic. Hence it is important for the leaders to keep changing staff members’ mindsets, skill structures and culture to drive their productivity. Leaders should also be giving incentives based on individual and team performances. This transformation of management needs a strong political basis, along with the support of the board, to embrace a culture of change. Transformation is extremely challenging and difficult to undertake. However, a strong, focused approach with structured pathways and good leadership will drive the process of change.

What role will human talent play in the future of the postal sector?
Each market has a different human talent and different skills – a fact I have observed while working in various countries. What I have observed is that some people adapt to change quickly and some take a lot of time. Hence the HR department must ensure that the younger generations, who are more willing to accept change, can be upskilled in the technology-driven systems and processes that will help the postal sector to sustain its business. The postal business is not easy to run in today’s world and hence it is important that all operators should get involved in strategies where they can improve the strength of their staff. Key examples of such strategies include welfare policies, regular market trend updates, knowledge upskilling and the development of a productivity culture through a performance-management system. Every one of an organization’s departments and strategic business units should work on developing new talent pools, succession plans and policies that will be in line with the younger generation. The business units should teach staff values, norms and the vision and objectives of the organization, to ensure that employees feel proud of working with their postal organization. Important to remember is that today’s younger generation is extremely talented and smart compared with earlier generations. Technology has certainly put these young people in a very knowledgeable and advantageous position.

Don’t miss Dr Bansod’s presentation, ‘Challenges of government employees culture and productivity’, as part of the dedicated ‘Small post perspectives’ session on Day 3 (Thursday, October 20) of Parcel+Post Expo in Frankfurt, Germany.

Dr Anirudha Bansod, CEO of Post Fiji

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