Within the Vertical Disintegrated Organization (VDO), the idea of knowledge workers is inadequate for today’s organizational needs. The term “knowledge worker” means that individuals were able to use technology in their respective field of specialization. The dialogue about “retraining” is also insufficient – it presumes the past definition for knowledge workers and focuses heavily upon continued creation of specific specialties (i.e. retrain manufacturing operators to become healthcare workers).
Instead, the e-Lancer of today is able to:
- Perform as a free agent, creating and implementing solutions of strategic value
- Create knowledge for decision-making, moving beyond providing information alone
- Understand the context of knowledge, relating key data within organizational strategies
- Integrate confidential source information, distinguishing between key differentiations
The leader and the hire-able talent of today must become partners who both rely upon the ability to think and translate data strategically.
There is a problem, however. Leaders today, in their drive towards speed, often think superficiality about talent and conceptualize short-term solutions in their talent utilization. What commonly results is a regard for specialties (i.e. accounting, sales, operations) and the possibilities of developing partnerships with e-Lancers is forfeited. Instead, what executives must demand, and e-Lancers must demonstrate, is a depth of opinion and richness of creativity that can be tapped at will and accessed with flexibility.
The MarketOne Executive Bottom Line
Executives need to take a different view with respect to talent, rethinking current evaluations and performance measures. Leaders who can only implement, execute, or direct will not be able to maneuver the rough economic waters, discover hidden market opportunities and leverage strategic talent to maximize revenue streams. Executive development needs to be geared to value and reward the conceptual application of strategic solutions, including the use of e-Lancers and the skills that this form of labor usage provides.