Business Life

Tele-Work, a prophecy


murat ulker

It is said that every cloud has a silver lining and now this mandatory order has become an indispensable part of the future. Human Resources managers agree to see some of the work done remotely (from home) as they move onto a new sparse (social distance) office set up. However, it seems as if it is going to be difficult for all of us in some way or another, to leave office life and give up our old habits. On the other hand, it is not easy even for a workaholic like me to maintain discipline remotely (from home), study, motivate myself and finally realize the criteria for success (KPIs)! However, I love Tele-Work and have even grown accustomed to working remotely.

It has been somewhat prophetic, and I feel fortunate. My highly skilled friends, whom I had trusted with the management of our two primary businesses and Yildiz Holding before Covid-19, became CEOs. When I transferred my post to my beloved nephew Ali Ülker, whom I have worked with for three decades, I decided to work remotely, as an activist main shareholder and a consultant in my field of expertise (i.e. innovation etc)in pladis, and Godiva, but in real terms, as the chairman of the board.

My goal is not to avoid visiting the office at all, nor to not even extend the weekend holidays by working remotely or only by working remotely on Friday and Monday, but for example to give the choice to my senior managers and guests who work with me remotely for meetings at the office, or those losing time in desperate delays, reducing their stress. In short, my goal is to provide satisfaction. Except for the market and facility visits, team meetings, which we can call work on-site, it consists of business reviews (qbr), board meetings and meetings in the office I have already been doing. After a recent business results review meeting, I have decided to continue these meetings via Tele-Work with my CEO friend after the pandemic as both focus and time efficiency are higher. As of yet, I still don’t fell comfortable when I am joining a physical meeting remotely, where everybody else is physically present or vice versa.

I mean, Tele-Work will be the accepted normal for the new generations, as some professions that have been eliminated thanks to the use of robotic software (bot) and artificial intelligence (AI) will allow this to happen. Whereas all current educational systems with a few exceptions (e.g. Finland) seem to be constructed to train bureaucrats and technocrats for a rigid office life.

What I mentioned in the conclusion (* see below) section of an article, I previously shared, are important and are the subjects I expect to be pursued and realized. However, the main permanent change will take place when the new youth, who were trained for Tele-Work for the necessities of the new work life, as they enter work life.

New Youth that can motivate themselves in this new business life, have self-discipline, and that can spread the balance of work and private life into 24 hours and the entire year; balancing not only a work agenda but also their personal life; and do not limit work and entertainment to merely physical environments.

(My colleague Carlos Canals, who inspired me, I remember and thank you here)


From Yıldız Holding Volunteer Disruption Group Study

In conclusion, our suggestions for the immediate implementation of the above projects are as follows:

1. In order to obtain efficiency from the Tele-Work method, firstly an office should be established in the house with material, technical equipment and support from the company.

2. The teleworker must have at least 1 day work in the company office; this working day should be fixed and the services such as the central office dining room and service should be adapted. Teleworkers should not take advantage of flexible working hours.

3. Priority should be given to the teleworking staff’s work processes, technology and software supports that enable them to see the whole, these software should be extremely simple, technological problems and complexities should not be an obstacle. It should not be forgotten that the Teams application is currently widely-used throughout Yıldız Holding.

4. Tele- daily, weekly and monthly performance management application should be adapted for employees, and KPIs should be provided through this application. Safety and convenience features should be the most important issues in the applications to be used.

5. Supporting the teleworker to show the entire work, providing communication and cooperation, and enabling them to work fast are the factors that increase the satisfaction of the teleworker in business life. These projects should be put into operation simultaneously.

6. Another important issue is the training, motivation and mental state of the teleworker and their regular follow-up. These applications should be implemented as soon as possible. At Yıldız Holding, there is now an application that asks the employees “how are you” every day with the help of AI. This application will be expanded.

7. When developing all systems, processes, applications, utilizing artificial intelligence analysis and bots (robotic processes) should be the primary principle.

8. The fact that Tele-Work is a part of our way of doing business permanently depends on the quality of leadership that is put forward when all projects are implemented and afterwards. Leaders should be visible, clear, communicate well, and the barriers in the middle should be eliminated with the HR department in order to keep the home employee connected with the company.

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