Leadership

30th April 2020

Don’t even think about bouncing back

Sooner or later the restrictions brought on by Covid19 will begin to ease and I hear constant references to bouncing back. Don’t even think about bouncing back.

This is more than a crisis, it is an opportunity; an opportunity to re-evaluate practices, beliefs, processes; in some cases, an opportunity to re-evaluate our fundamental businesses and business models. The majority of business people I have spoken to over the last six weeks will attest to having learned a lot because of the crisis. Don’t let that learning go to waste by returning to where you were. Commit to putting your learnings into action. Don’t bounce back. Bounce forward to a better place, a better business, a better life.

Normal has left the building

At the risk of pointing out the obvious normal has left the building. Or what we once thought of as normal has left the building and is not going to return ever again. Sure there will, eventually, be a new dawning, a new world picture, a new normal but it is going to be significantly different to what we knew even six weeks ago. If you bounce back to a world of six weeks ago you will find yourself perfectly suited to survive in a world that no longer exists.
Here are just a few areas that you might like to ponder. What changes may we start to see in public perception and behaviour regarding public servants, the National Health, how we perceive customer care, how we regard work, eating out, public events, our colleagues, our bosses, our purpose, our families and our relationships?

Change is difficult

P.D. Ouspensky wrote a novel called Strange Life of Ivan Osokin about someone who had the chance to start his unsuccessful life over again. He ended up making the same mistakes on his second chance as he had done first time round. Don’t let that be you. No matter what the downside and the upside, change is difficult. Changing our behaviour and our thinking are the hardest changes of all. Find someone to guide you and hold you accountable on the journey. Do it consciously and intentionally. Do not let the opportunity go to waste.

You do not necessarily need to be able to forecast the future but you do need to be sensitive to the emerging trends and agile and reactive enough to pivot before you miss the opportunity.