A new world order requires new frameworks for businesses to operate in a post-Covid19 world. Our series on how companies are adapting to WFH, pivoting their business models, redefining business functions and processes, and more.
Today more than ever, organisations across the world are clouded by uncertainty and no one knows when the Covid-19 situation is going to end. Not just that, the most ironic part is that there are no best practices that we can learn from anyone or any country because everyone is in it together for the first time.
While organisations are dealing with deadlines just as they were, another big challenge that they are facing both internally and externally is managing their most important assets – ‘people’. Coronavirus has undoubtedly shown us one of the biggest unexpected disruptions worldwide. This scenario is overwhelming, but it is imperative to have strategies that ensure your business runs smoothly.
Therefore, here are five important questions to ask yourself as a leader:
- Am I and my organisation prepared?
- How are my employees feeling with the Covid-19 crisis?
- How well can my business fare during this time?
- Who would assume responsibility for various changes and ensure uninterrupted operations? and what would those changes be?
- How would this impact my key stakeholders like employees, customers, suppliers, and my organization’s value?
This reminds me, in 1996 Bill Gates made some bold predictions on the future of the internet that actually hold true today and clearly establishes that online platforms are the new norms. when this prediction was made only 1% of the world was online and connection speed was painfully slow. And Today, one single PC is as good as an office.
Hence, here are five strategies we need to keep in mind to normalize this disruption:
I’ll make the Mantra is simple – Think outside the box, communicate effectively and make things happen through these suggestions.
Immediately Launch Online Webinars
Is should be specific to your key stakeholders for example:
Webinar For Employees
Set new expectations and ask for expectations from team members on aspects of communication, availability, task allocation, and approachability. Ensure you do daily inspiring Check-in and check-out with your team, so they don’t feel lost and stay charged-up especially when it’s new for most people to work alone amid a worldwide uncertainty of a pandemic.
Webinar For Customers
Let them know how you are simplifying your services to make them available online or if that is not possible then how are you making your communication or other transactions available to them online. Smart businesses focus on saving time, cost and effort for their customers.
Webinar For Suppliers
Set new expectations and ensure how they can feel secure with online transactions with your organization. Keeping them informed will reduce insecurity and establish trust with vendors which will ensure they always stand by you.
Online Team Building
My favorite one, yes, even this is possible. Since traditional ways of taking teams out for parties and trips are no longer going to be available anytime sooner, platforms like zoom offer great tools like polling, reactions and separate break-out rooms to make activities interactive.
Good facilitation and pre-planning will come handy to increase focus, productivity, and energy for employees. Now it’s possible to do Zumba, Mediation or even business games with conferencing tools. These online video conferencing tools Zoom have added security features to ensure you have a smooth experience.
Connecting Over Video Calls
Video connects enable you to connect on a deeper level than phone alone. You can gain a better understanding of their feelings, expressions, body language and build better rapport daily. Use tools like Skype, Zoom, WebEx, etc.
Disciplined weekly review of employee morale, state of mind along with tasks and deadlines. Each crisis provides an opportunity to revamp the organization’s strategies. And, this plan only evolves with regular review and taking suggestions from each stakeholder.
Some guiding questions can be – what’s going well? What are we learning? What changes in processes and resources are needed under this scenario? Use of task management tools is a great way to stay accountable if you have a shared to-do list, considering we are a big fan of accountability. Some tools to help you with:
- Project management Tools like Anydo, Trello or Asana.
- Chat Solutions Like Gchat or Slack
- File storage in the cloud-like on Drive or Dropbox
These tools allow everyone to schedule their day and stay in touch, providing a clear picture to everyone in the team whether locally or globally, keeping everyone in the loop.
Utilise Social Media And Digital Marketing
All previous crises and major news events have all confirmed that social media and digital marketing are one of the most important channels of communications. Make sure to connect with your social media team and monitor the engagement with social media activity throughout the crisis and stay connected.
A lot of advertisers and websites are using fear tactics and misinformation to sell products. Brands that provide accurate information about coronavirus and its impact stand to build long-term trust and deepen connections with both their employees and customers. A crisis well managed will save you decades of hard work and organisation value.
To conclude, it’s clear that it’s time to give more and invest in the right tools and strategies. This will give you long-term benefits because when all of this subsides you should have a solid comeback story. So, put in place a reliable social media and digital marketing strategy, and online team building to create a more personalized experience for your employees and customers.
That’s how you establish trust, flawless communication and make things happen!