“The historic challenge for leaders is to manage the crisis while building the future.” – Henry Kissinger
It’s is a given fact that many businesses will have to change their way of doing things post-Covid-19 era. The Covid-19 pandemic has been one of the most unanticipated disruptions in the business world. It has rewritten the rules by which businesses are run.
It’s possible that some businesses will require less working space and adopt more virtual operations. It is also possible that some services will become obsolete while others gain higher importance. New partnerships and collaborations will arise to gain support to businesses in different areas of expertise.
Each business has struggled to operate during the pandemic in its own way. However, one thing that all leaders can agree on is that they would need to come up with new strategies to handle their businesses after the pandemic is over.
Here are some insights for leaders and business owners after the Covid-19 era:
- Building resilience and versatility
For businesses that have managed to maneuver through these difficult times, resilience has been a crucial ingredient. Businesses that have built versatility and agility within their workforce have handled the challenges faced without breaking down from all the strains. Leaders ought to realize the need to build resilience within their workforce. They have to make resilience not a destination but a way of being. Leaders have to encourage building attitudes, beliefs, versatility, and structures within the culture of the organization so that it can be prepared for unexpected changes.
- There has to be a shift in mindsets
Leaders will be forced to shift their mindsets and envision scenarios that would not have occurred to them before. If a business was stuck on some norm of ‘this is how we do things’, the pandemic has shown that even the strongest business structures can be shaken. Changing mindsets will help leaders look at different ways they can grow their organizations and prepare for tough times hence help them developing resilience.
- Embracing digital transformation
Businesses have realized the importance of digital transformation and how much it can come in handy in times of crisis. Companies with better digital innovation have coped better in the months following the pandemic. Some were still lagging behind since they had not perfected their digital operations such that things could be run virtually. Introducing employees to virtual meetings for example, and embracing substituting some operations with digital solutions will prepare the workforce to use technology more often and not feel inconvenienced.
- Changing customer expectations
The pandemic has changed everyone’s experiences, especially the customers. The businesses will have to rethink the way they design, communicate, and approach their customers. They also have to rethink convenience and prioritize digital solutions. For example, the pandemic has taught customers that there is so much that they can achieve virtually such as shopping, and are likely to carry these habits into the post-Covid-19 era.
- Taking a closer look at employee wellbeing
Every organization’s workforce has felt some form of challenge. First, working from home has been a whole new experience for some. For others, it was really stressful changing the normal such that some employees experienced depression from the isolation. This has called to the attention of leaders to take a closer look at the mental health of employees. Employees that work virtually would need more support to cope with loneliness. This creates a need to look at establishing a human-centered, systems-minded approach to support employees and take their well-being into better consideration.
- Over-invest in communication
You can never communicate too much. As organizations shift from face to face and encourage virtual operations, communication strategies will change. As a leader, heed your communication styles. Develop a style that is deliberate and open and ready to have tough conversations. Make communication at the right tempo and frequency so as to keep everyone on the same page. Open communication will make employees feel supported and encourage them to bring up issues of concern as they work virtually.
- Crisis management
Leaders have to take a closer look at their abilities to manage crises. Some crises, such as the one that has befallen most businesses recently, have no formula and no one really knows how to navigate such situations. Leaders have had to find their way around the crisis. Some successfully, some through imitation, and some are still struggling. In the post-Covid-19 era, leaders will need better crisis handling skills and envision worst-case scenarios and how to handle them.
- Less reactive and more proactive
What was your reaction to the pandemic as a leader? While you could have reacted and cried woe unto me, some were being proactive and taking this as an opportunity to reinvent themselves. Leaders have to learn to take moments of adversity as an opportunity to picture a successful future, energize their teams, and mold them in such a way that they can withstand most forms of adversities. A good number of leaders have realized that their businesses will never be the same again and have come up with solutions to create a new and better reality for their workforce.
- Seek support from other leaders and experts
No one has the magic formula on how to navigate a pandemic. However, by seeking support from others and experts, leaders will stand in better positions to handle challenges that are thrown their way. There are some programs being offered to help leaders navigate the workplace post-Covid-19 era. Seeking such programs and gaining insight from experts can help leaders place their businesses in a better position to manage challenges in the future.
Conclusively, it is likely that the business environment will not be the same as before the post-Covid-19 era. The sooner leaders and business owners realize this, the sooner they can prep their organizations for an alternative future.
The Destiny Team