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A better balance

Using lessons learned from an unprecedented 2020, expect the New Year to be one where people around the world strike a better balance between their home and work lives, ultimately befitting both businesses and their customers.

Through the pandemic-hit 2020, it was clear a lot of businesses – ANZ included – saw their approach to human capital evolve; becoming more empathetic and authentic, sometimes through simply listening to their staff in ways they never had before.

In many cases, what started as businesses continuity programs, setting up staff to work from home, morphed into a very powerful movement that will change the relationship between a business and its staff for years to come.

I tend to use the phrase ‘the new www’, because work, work/life and the workforce have all three changed at the same time. The old work-life balance has become more of a work/life blend, with our personal and professional lives moving closer to each other.

The almost artificial compartmentalisation we were used to - living two concurrent lives -will in some ways become a thing of the past.


Outlook 2021

After an unprecedented 2020, the outlook for 2021 is a difficult one to pin down. The post-COVID landscape is one of rapid technological change, a transformational shakeup of global trading orthodoxy, and an increasing focus on sustainable business practices.

At ANZ Institutional, we aim to help our customers put themselves in the best possible position to take advantage of these forces. Our subject-matter experts have the insight to offer market-leading thought leadership in a range of complex areas from across more than 30 global markets.

As 2021 looms, we are asking our experts about the key factors they see shaping markets and industry in 2021 – and the opportunities and challenges within. We’ll be sharing the responses with you over the coming weeks.


For business, the challenge remains how they execute on their strategies in this new world of staffing, trying to get the job done with minimum bureaucracy.

But it is likely the changes of 2020 will also accelerated the way we make decisions at a management level. I think organisational structures have flattened during the crisis and the flow of decision making will be much quicker.

The challenge is to retain that, sustain the good parts and ask ourselves not to fall back into the old bureaucratic ways, wherever they exist.

I am hugely optimistic about 2021 and look forward to putting the challenges of 2020 behind us.

Sreeram Iyer is COO at ANZ Institutional

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