Techleap is a network organisation envoyed by Prince Constantijn. Over the last 3 years they’ve created synergies between leading Dutch tech companies and hosted scale-up programs and seminars to strengthen and grow the Dutch tech industry.
For the launch of BOLD - a sub-community within Techleap for the Netherlands’ 300 most prominent tech founders - Techleap organised an event that presented a full day program covering 3 themes; attracting capital, internationalisation and DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion).
After winning a competitive pitch, Foster & Kin was tasked to program the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion element, focusing on the future of leadership and the disconnect between current leadership and the workplace expectations of Gen-Z. From the offset the goal was ambitious; instigating an epiphany that would drive behavioural change amongst business leaders.
Because art has the power to move people and inspire them to reflect, we began crafting a narrative that we could translate into an immersive video installation. Using nature as a metaphor, we built a 36 screen tree-shaped construction that tells a story that goes from monoculture (onedimensional, old world leadership) to biodiversity (a versatile, carefully balanced mix of perspectives).
The 10 minute installation starts with a reflection on today's dominant leadership style in business which is a consequence of a generation of leaders that is raised and educated in a time where creating shareholder value is the single reason for the existence of a company. This focus on profitability led to monoculture – not only in agricultural practices, but also culturally and ideologically – and the systemic exploitation of planet and people. This ‘survival of the fittest’ market dynamic resulted in competitive, outspoken, decisive and dominant leadership.
Interviews with young professionals display a huge disconnect between this style of leadership and Gen-Z’s expectations of the leadership and the workplace. Gen-Z wants companies to work from a mission that goes beyond creating shareholder value and expects modern, flexible and inclusive workplace cultures where everyone is heard. The change in leadership style needed to attract and retain Gen-Z talent is slowed down by a hostile frame in the media with headlines like 'The 37 year olds who are afraid of the 23 year olds who work for them'.
However, balanced leadership is on the rise. A type of leadership that combines traditional leadership values such as decisiveness and outspokenness with more connecting, nurturing values. Businesses that have installed balanced leadership organically transition into the modern, flexible and inclusive workplace cultures Gen-Z’ers want. As a result, these inclusive cultures have better business performance and higher likelihood to grow into new markets.
80% of the installation was custom animation, the other 20% consisted of interviews with Gen-Z’ers and business leaders who shared their views on the topic. Throughout the story we subtly move from a grey, dystopian atmosphere to a more optimistic and colourful world
Executive Creative Director - Perre van den Brink
Creative - Anke Hofstra
Account Director - Fiona Salem
DEI Strategy - Nadine Ridder
Title Designer - Immanuel de Jong
Voice Over Recordist - Gijs Domen
Interviews produced by - Fonk Film
Line producer - Maxime Rozestraten
Director of Photography - Tom Bakker
Sound Recordist - Leonardo Fontana Balparda
Director - Perre van den Brink
Research - Anke Hofstra
Project Manager - Fiona Salem
Creative Director - Jeff Beukema
Production - Daan Schraauwers
Programming - Nikzad Arabshahi
3D Animation - Daan Dominic Scholten
3D Animation - Blaž Miklavčič
3D Animation - Jeff Beukema
Concept - Jeff Beukema
Concept - Luc Nagel
Set & Stage Design - Jeff Beukema
Set & Stage Design - Rowan Siriram
Music & Sound - Antfood