Corona vs Corporations
As the number of coronavirus cases climbs worldwide, businesses are feeling tested in their continuity, and finding challenges in maintaining their existing operations uninterrupted.
Some companies are dusting off old crisis management plans, others are going through the mill for having none in place, while the rest are choosing to “wait and see.” Whatever approach your business adopts to ride out large-scale and long-term disruptions, one thing is certain: the effect is felt in ways large and small.
Here are some of the pains felt today by companies everywhere, giants or not.
Deployment: Major corporations use a rotation and deployment model where employees often spend workdays in one country at client sites and weekends in another. Today, chances are one or more of these countries either pose a contagion risk or is potentially on lockdown. Post-corona, companies have implemented a travel ban on all employee travel, leaving them feeling “stranded.”
Logistics: The Corona crisis has prompted the largest work-from-home movement to date. Companies globally, big and small, public and private, are carrying out flexible work arrangements, and giants like facebook and Amazon are encouraging their employees to work from home. Otherwise, events everywhere are dropping from the calendar like flies, being cancelled or suspended until further notice.
Morale: Uncertainty about the future in general and about the duration of this uneasy period is driving up anxiety levels for most. A news cycle constantly refreshed with alarming updates, cancellation of social gatherings, inability to plan for the future, deserted public spaces, and in some instances the mandatory confinement is generating a sense of isolation and pushing down the collective morale.
Bottom line: Some businesses are witnessing clients backing out of investments and deal valuations being revisited. Sick workers and scared customers, stock markets are in decline, supply chain is suffering and service-centric, B2C and consumer-facing companies are feeling the heat.
Despite the dire forecast, businesses can still operate efficiently.
We are today a tech-enabled civilization. We live in the era of ease of technology, in a virtually borderless world and in rapidly changing times. Restrictions are difficult but they might be hitting the hardest on a cellular, psychological level because as individuals, we feel that we are stripped of the fundamental right of freedom of movement.
Businesses and other legal entities on the other hand do not have to suffer as much, or as big, and they can still function productively in ways that might not have been possible a decade ago. For those who find productivity in stability alone, uncertainty is akin to trouble, but a select few possess the foresight to find opportunity in chaos.
At Saba Consultants, we are applying a two-tenet approach to see ourselves through this period. Our method is proactive and consists of transparent communication coupled with agility and purpose.
Communicate frequently and transparently: Your communication should be multi-channeled and multi-shaped. Communicate the measures your business is taking to ensure your employees’ wellbeing, physical and otherwise. Comfort your stakeholders about continuity by sharing your business’ progress and/or challenges. Keep the morale up by sharing positive facts and discrediting rumors.
Now is also the time for agility and purpose to kick in. Audit your messaging and review your business model and adapt them to the times. Revisit your business as a purpose and consider the intersection between its function and the requirements of the present situation.
We can help your business through this period too. Get in touch to find out how and watch this space for more tips on corporate survival in the time of corona.