How to be Crisis Ready in the Future – Tips for Business and Marketing
As COVID-19 evolved into a full-blown pandemic and shelter-in-place took effect, business owners questioned: are we crisis ready? Some quickly adapted and took the “new norm” as an opportunity to experiment with technology and different standard operating procedures. Then, others scrambled to get a plan together that may have been too little too late. So, what sets the tone for success, when a crisis hits and the economy is inevitably impacted? TechRepublic suggests that it may have something to do with being an FRB (Future Ready Business).
The tech blog says, “Despite nearly 50% of businesses reporting decreased profits (compared with 2019), 30% of future-ready businesses (FRB) reported a rise in profits. FRBs represent 20% of all companies and are identified by characteristics including adaptability, openness to technology, and clear transformation goals. Only 20% of all businesses qualified as FRBs.” Now, let’s break that down into some tips for each of those characteristics. Below, we’ve lined out some simple steps when preparing for a crisis and implementing technology.
Adaptability – Ready for anything!
- Get away from the “That’s the way we’ve always done it” mentality.
- Encourage your team to creatively problem solve. A team that is willing to brainstorm and experiment will quickly learn what sticks and what doesn’t. They have the ability to bounce back and try something new.
- Be able to read signals and act on them. This means avoid burying yourself into tedious tasks so much that you are unaware. Stay involved with the team and watch for trends or shifts. Read your clientele, customers, and audience, by being involved as the spokesperson for your business.
Openness to Technology = Crisis Ready
- Be bold and take a risk. It is typically best to pilot new technology in “normal” times, due to the pace of things. However, a crisis can sometimes be the perfect time to brazenly execute a new digital plan.
- Now that your digital plan is launched, leverage your new digital visibility into transparent communication to your audiences as well as your team. Transparency is critical and builds trust between you, the team, and your audiences.
- Finally, be open to working in a new landscape such as telework. Telework can open new avenues for your team. The flexibility can improve your team members’ quality of life. Try new approaches to productivity, like project management software.
Clear Transformation Goals
- This bears repeating: transparency and clear communication are critical during a crisis. You must make sure you’re clear with all communications and expectations during a digital transformation to ensure alignment and proper training.
- Now, remember to keep things simple and organized. Avoid taking on too many competing priorities. You are going to need to research the best avenues for your business and stick to those.
- Lastly, and most importantly: have a plan. Involve your team in the planning, so that when launch begins, no one is in the dark.
So, it’s important to keep in mind that what works for one, doesn’t work for all. There are many business types and resources available for each specific type. Consider what makes your business unique and consult an expert or consultant to help you narrow down a plan. That way, you can be a FRB when a crisis occurs.
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