- Posted by Ioana Good
- On March 30, 2020
- business continuity, coronavirus, internal communications
Change is an inevitable part of life. At times, we are tested by things that we cannot control and we have a choice of two paths: become bogged down with frustration, uncertainty and fear, or switch into a higher gear and become creatively responsive and strategic, delivering full-speed-ahead value. Savvy leaders know that this is a time for invention and ingenuity because, as with any change, opportunities lie ahead. As you consider your business continuity and continue to navigate new terrain, here are three actions you can take to drive success.
Focus on others
Uncertain times can lead people to think only about themselves and their current situation without a focus on the future. In order to succeed, leaders must put their needs aside and encourage others around them to collectively show up, provide value and go the distance with progress in mind. For instance, as we embrace digitalization and a new remote work environment, think creatively about what works and what can be implemented in existing business lines after this health crisis is over. If you were used to doing most things in person, can you do it better and faster using remote tools? Is there anything that can be automated to bring your client value? This is a time to deepen your own power and relationships to help business flourish. Every time you strengthen a relationship and create value, the viability and commodity increase.
Conduct an innovation competition
If we have learned anything from the past, it’s that innovation and change have helped strengthen businesses by creating more efficiencies, valuable services and new lines of business. For example, during the last recession, banks responded to their client needs by providing online banking solutions for fast, convenient access, and this service has now become the norm. Disruptors like these create new business models. Consider using this time to conduct an internal and external innovation competition with your employees, clients and industry partners to sharpen your offerings and discover ways to innovate. Ask individuals to identify their top three ideas or top three challenges. Once the top ideas are selected, work together to add this to your business continuity plan. After all, the time is ripe to try new things, and by instilling this kind of entrepreneurial spirit in your workplace, chances are that your team will keep innovating long after this over.
Plan and prioritize
In a crisis, things tend to move rapidly. Therefore, it is important to stop, breathe and focus on planning and prioritizing immediate actions for today, tomorrow and the future. As things change, your plan may change, but it’s better to have a plan in place than to not have one at all. Work together to map out a course of action, identify milestones and communicate these things clearly. Additionally, set some time aside to revisit your plan and ask questions such as:
- What are the current risks?
- Where can we provide value to clients and industry partners?
- What industries will fare better than others, and how can we learn from them?
- How can we help our clients?
- What is the upside potential of the opportunity?
- How much risk remains?
The takeaway here is simple: if you want to win during a crisis, don’t lose momentum.
Ioana Good is vice president at Poston Communications, based in Orlando.