Ask any woodworker what the easiest way to craft the most intriguing piece of furniture is. Invariably, most of them will tell you that the easiest way to shape a woodblock is to move along the grains. That is exactly how they shape an ordinary block of wood into something fascinating. Interestingly, this idea of moving along the grain is quite handy in other spheres of life as well. The only difference is the meaning of ‘grain’ changes according to a particular concept.
For example, when an organization plans to digitalize and transform their operations, it is only ideal to do it along the line of their business ideas, beliefs, or principles (which, in this case, are the metaphorical grains). However, it is often easier said than done.
The current COVID-19 pandemic is dramatically changing both the competitive environment within companies and the way their employees work. Even though companies are being forced to build stronger frontline organizations and draw out individual employees’ power for survival and growth, the increasing physical and psychological distance between companies and their employees is pushing them against the established grain. This, in turn, is highlighting the importance of “frontline managers.” They are now expected to go beyond their role as daily experience providers and become pertinent in the survival and growth of companies and the nexus of the lives and livelihoods of individual workers. Helping them in achieving just that is Tokyo-based KAKEAI, which is committed to improving the interaction between frontline managers and the workforce with its ingenious cloud-based, AI-driven people success platform. “In a situation where the distance between the individual and their employers is widening, we aim to solve the problems that gather around frontline managers,” states Hidetaka Honda, CEO of KAKEAI.
Elaborating on the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on businesses, Honda explains that HR and company management are now continually facing the challenges of switching from a group to a more individualistic management of employees.
In a situation where the distance between the individual and their employers is widening, we aim to solve the problems that gather around frontline managers
To successfully make this transition, the frontline managers need to break the mold of their gut-feelings, make more informed decisions, and engage with the employees more meaningfully. Nevertheless, with the widening generation gap, growing diversity, changing employee demands, and unstable business environment, managers are busier than ever to tackle the issues effectively.
In a bid to straighten these issues out, KAKEAI’s cloud-based AI solution gathers individual managers’ knowledge of engaging with their members. Then, it makes the data available to other managers using specific datasets, algorithms, and products to disseminate the best AI-driven suggestions. This helps managers formulate recommendations on how they should individually interact with their staff.
Additionally, KAKEAI offers five different and unique data sets (types of managers and members, context or circumstances, interaction quality, and outcome of the said interaction) to eliminate the genus in management. A more in-depth analysis of these datasets can translate into quantitative results, such as improved business performance and turnover. As a matter of fact, a specific client used the KAKEAI people success solution and witnessed a 33 percent increase in business performance and a 37 percent decrease in turnover rate. They were also able to save hundreds of millions of dollars in training costs for management personnel compared to organizations that do not use it.
Helping organizations transform in such meaningful ways, KAKEAI is now poised to play a prominent role in changing the trajectory of AI-driven people management. The company is already expanding its footprints in the U.S. and European markets. “Going forward, we plan to connect managers around the world beyond their organizations and distribute facts and knowledge,” says Honda. “And for this, we are aiming to act like ‘Github’ in the sense of accumulating and deploying management knowledge, ‘LinkedIn’ in connecting people around the world who are responsible for the management, and “Salesforce” in optimally engaging with employees as they were clients. Only then will we be able to achieve optimal recruiting for individuals and companies, as well as increase the value of frontline managers,” concludes Honda.