The New Needs of the Workforce – with Saket Srivastava, CIO of Asana

It’s difficult to create the right operating model in a post-pandemic work environment. Whether your workforce is remote, hybrid, or in-person, teams need the right structure and security to work efficiently. 

Saket Srivastava is the CIO of Asana, a software company that helps teams orchestrate and organize their work. In this episode, Saket explains the realities of today’s shifting office environment and describes the complexities of delivering the needed tools and experiences to different workforces. He emphasizes the importance of empowering your employee base and creating opportunities to be together, no matter where your team works from. Saket says that, no matter what, your employees need a space to do deep work and have the tools and platforms to help them do it well. 

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Key Quotes:

“Whatever vision you take, whether you decide to go fully remote, whether you try to be a hybrid workforce, or all in-office, you’ll never be in a situation where everyone’s gonna love the vision. It’s not a consensus based vision. But the bigger challenge ends up being when you have not taken the company along in this journey. What are the reasons, the first principles against which you are making a decision on how you want to operate? Everything that follows after that has to support that vision.

“Technology can only take you so far. There’s a whole lot of innovation that cropped up even before the pandemic, and obviously through the pandemic. But that human connection is just so important. If you’ve been in a place where you’ve kept most of your workforce remote, it’s still very important to find opportunities to get people together.”

“As a CIO, what’s important to me and my organization is how we create experiences for people where they can do their deep work when they need to do the deep work. And then provide them with tools and platforms to engage with teams and with people in the most productive way.”

“The way I think of security? Security is everyone’s problem. Whether you’re a security company or not. It’s for every employee in the organization to understand that  they have a role to play in making sure that the company is secure.”


Time stamps:

03:05 The challenge of adapting your workforce model

06:45 Setting up a successful working model

08:40 Keeping human connection strong in a digital world

12:20 Creating a positive employee experience

16:33 Maintaining a secure workforce

19:21 Keeping safe tools in, dangerous tools out

22:15 The value of curiosity

27:10 Having an empathetic conversation with the board



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