After this unprecedented crisis in recent history, we estimate a real chasm between communication and action. A break-up with a past defined by established norms and a meet-up with a future defined by a new normality that comes with restructuring the social and economic order. The post-COVID economy is challenging us.
To convert this crisis into opportunities, the companies is advisable to act in five stages, which will lead them from the current crisis to the new normality, the post-COVID one. The five stages are:
Many companies are slowing down or even stopping their operations, while some are trying to accelerate to meet the high demand in the basic industries covering food, home supplies and personal hygiene products. the continuity of the activity in safe conditions and to establish the functions that can work from a distance. The solution depends on the correct evaluation of the size, speed and depth of the actions necessary to secure the continuity of the workflow, where it is allowed.
The health crisis is turning into a financial crisis, as the uncertainty regarding the size, duration and form of the GDP decline, attested by the budget rectification and the increase of the technical unemployment demands undermines what remains of the confidence in the business. Short-term actions to ensure liquidity and solvency are essential. Companies will need to activate broader resistance plans. The shock will begin to erode the structure of industries, resetting competitive positions most likely for good.
Most industries will have to reactivate their entire supply chain and at the same time recalibrate it. The weakest link in the chain will influence the success of returning to re-employment and reaching the previous productivity levels. Many industries will see purchasing behaviors strongly modified by the imperative requirements of digitization, disappearance / occurrence of some products or services. Restarting companies of strategic importance, with many employees and significant contributions with respecting health safety will count in the reactivation of support companies in those industries and the unlocking of economies.
A shock to this scale will create a change in the preferences and expectations of individuals as citizens, employees and consumers. The companies that reinvent themselves, to make the most of this experience and anticipate the trends, as the preferences evolve, will have a guaranteed success. We might be able to witness a rethink of the global supply chain if production and supply move as close to the end-user as possible. Also we might see a moment of unicorns in e-health that can appear against the background of the prevention and security need. The field of education will encounter a reformatting of the means of knowledge transfer and reimagining of the interaction with students, of the evaluation, of the pedagogical approach.
This crisis will provide us the opportunity to learn from a variety of innovations and social experiments, from homeworking and distance learning to respecting social distance and how to buy. It is very likely decission-makers to operate selections of innovations that could ensure economic and social well-being and those that could inhibit the development of society, even if they helped stop or limit the spread of the virus. Production lines that no longer had a business case now could be relaunched. The re-training of the employed personnel or the optimization of their use through teleworking could change the occupancy rate of the office buildings. Collaborative online work systems will redefine team management in many industries. Recruitment and motivation and evaluation strategies will change depending on the form of collaboration: full-time employee at the office or online, flexible program at the office and at home, freelancer.
Four essential behaviours for decision-makers
- Rational action – Activating critical and strategic attention and thinking.
- Avoid Negative Comparison – Undermines your mood by irrelevant comparisons. Now is the time for pertinent analysis and courageous action.
- The “here and now” type operational approach – We cannot have clear medium and long term plans in uncertainty, but we can do everything here and now.
- Adaptability – Glorious past is not the guarantee of future success. Self-confidence and teamwork matter. Attention to new opportunities and availability for transformation are important.