Like many of us in NZ, I am writing this from the pleasant surrounds of my lounge, with the rest of my family ‘getting dibs’ on the more appropriate working spaces…but hey, none of them have the basketball hoop this close for the mini breaks!
For some of the clients I am talking to at the moment, they are seeing opportunities within the uncertainty. Others are having to work out how to ensure their business survives the disruption.
Remove the noise – what are your priorities right now, as that is where your focus needs to be and then be myopic about stopping or deferring all the other things on your ‘to do’. It’s tough to let go of things, especially pet projects, but it has to happen. Irrespective of the economic downturns, crisis or large transformations I have been a part of, it’s the people with laser focus who are the ones who prosper coming out the other side.
Engage your employees on these priorities – in times of uncertainty they want to feel connected to what is happening, see how what they do is important and that they have the licence to ensure that your customers are looked after as best as possible. If they work in an area impacted by your reprioritisation, they need to know what will happen to them and what they can do to help if they have that opportunity.
Limited resources and budget - Not only will the above help you to focus the time and attention of all that amazing talent in your team but it also ensures you are wasting fewer resources. We all have limited budgets (time, money, people) so this relentless focus allows everyone to know exactly how they should be using these different organisational assets.
Decision making - This relentless focus on priorities, and as a result, the alignment of activities across your business, then also increases your speed of decision making. Outside of these times, too often I see organisations battle with making robust decisions fast. You don’t have that luxury right now but also it’s a great opportunity to ‘build the muscle’ so that post this economic stumble (I am an optimist) it’s something that is more pervasive over the longer term.
Don’t forget your culture – Nailing these four things right now helps to support a more dynamic culture in your business at a time when you need to move fast. At the same time it can help you to create a more lasting impact in creating the culture that you feel will be important when the latest lockdown ends, and your business needs to continue to succeed. The above choices influence your culture, which in turn will influence the future decisions you make around the choices that have to be made. Act badly now and your customers and employees will remember. Look after them and you will see the benefits in a market where finding good people is tough. Culture is key.
Lastly, please all stay safe. Irrespective of your stance on vaccinations (I am in for mine next week) lets keep doing our part in the short term so as a country we have a viable position from which to hopefully commence a robust debate around how we successfully integrate back in a ‘covid as a constant’ world.