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In order to thrive in a partnership with intelligent machines, managers in insurance must have skills and behaviors that will drive organizational performance. These include analytical reasoning, digital know-how and business acumen. They also need interpersonal skills to build teams, foster innovation and encourage new ways of working.
But, according to a new survey by the Accenture Institute for High Performance and Accenture Strategy, an overwhelming majority of managers in insurance continue to underrate human skills in the age of cognitive computing.
Of the managers surveyed, only 28 percent said they believed people development and coaching were among the top three skills needed to thrive in a partnership with intelligent machines.
And only about a fifth of those surveyed thought collaboration would be among the top three skills needed.
In the age of intelligent machines, managers in insurance will need to inspire their teams and enable them to succeed. They will need to learn how to interpret the analyses and recommendations those machines provide to ask the right questions and improve decision making.
But the fact that a majority of managers continue to underrate the interpersonal skills required in the digital age means some will fail to develop, coach and collaborate with others to drive experimentation and innovation across the organization.
The reality is that some won’t be able to make the shift required. To achieve the right skill levels and blend of capabilities, insurance leaders will likely need to sharpen the human edge and chart a new course of discovery within their management teams.
There are several ways CEOs and leaders in insurance can make sure that the workforce of the future can thrive in the age of intelligent machines. To perfect the union between managers and machines, they will need to:
- Revise their organizations’ existing training and coaching programs, as well as individual performance criteria.
- Look outside their organizations for managers who excel in judgment work and are comfortable working with intelligent machines.
- Revisit and realign talent sourcing, development and reward strategies.
The rise of cognitive computing comes with a lot of unknowns. Leaders in insurance can’t depend on intelligent machines to show them the way forward. For that, they will need to rely on experimentation, past experiences and their intuition. They will, in effect, need to engage in judgment work of the highest order.
“Managers and Machines, Unite!” Insurance Infographic
Learn how intelligent machines are poised to dramatically shift management roles and recast the workforce of the future.