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Prof. Dr Heike Bruch

Director of the Institute for Leadership and Human Resource Management, University of St. Gallen

Prof. Dr Heike Bruch is Professor of Leadership at the University of St. Gallen, where she heads the Institute for Leadership and Human Resource Management. She is on the board of the German Society for Human Resource Management (DGFP), advises top executives on leadership and cultural change and founded the energy factory St. Gallen in 2006. Heike Bruch is one of the 100 most successful women in Switzerland. She has received several awards for her work as a leading researcher in human resources research in the German-speaking world. Her main areas of work include "Energy & Dynamics", "Leadership Transformation", "Speed" and "New Leadership & Work."

keynote | German


New Leadership. Between Leadership and Overheating

Director of the Institute for Leadership and Human Resource Management at the University of St. Gallen Prof. Dr. Heike Bruch details the effects of digitalization and demographic change and offers insight on how to navigate the resulting turbulent waters through leadership. Facing an insufficient workforce as soon as 2025, it is becoming increasingly important to accept and adapt to new developments and create more desirable workplaces. The lockdown during the pandemic has presented new factors be considered while transition to New Work. While uncertain circumstances like these may be harrowing, Prof. Dr. Bruch sees singular opportunities in them because of the high rate of failure. The demand for more speed and efficiency in the new workplace has led to increased feelings of being overwhelmed and a danger of “overheating”. Adopting transformational leadership while keeping transactional leadership at an adequate minimum can help to keep purpose in focus. Especially while the effects of the pandemic are still weighing on many, the pressure for more efficiency can be a trap, one that can be avoided through lowering pressure to perform and increasing tolerance for failure, keep well defined priorities, and taking “pitstops” to evaluate what has been accomplished.