We are entering a crucial time. As we move beyond the COVID crisis into the new world that lies ahead, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to re-write the rules, to reset the global economy, and to explore fresh, exciting possibilities within a very different business climate.
Crisis has always been a great inspiration and motivator for change, creating the burning platform from which organisations either take a risk to leap into the unknown, or face their demise.
For the Middle East – already a region under transformational change – the wealth of opportunities this new era presents could not have come at a better time. We have witnessed tremendous developments in recent months with the unveiling of new strategies under such national programmes as Saudi Vision 2030 – for example – which have already started to transform the economies in fundamental ways.
"...the core pillars...that underpinned past successes will continue to be important as we seek to turn crisis to our advantage."
But, even as we welcome new and novel ways of working, the core pillars of collaboration, learning, investing in people, building resilience, and pursuing innovation that underpinned past successes will continue to be important as we seek to turn crisis to our advantage.
The pandemic has put future-proofing and business resilience at the top of the boardroom agenda, as organisations seek to learn lessons and ensure they are better prepared to face future disruption, whatever its form.
The most successful organisations in the new world will be those that are able to adapt quickly yet thoughtfully to what is coming now, next and beyond. As we move forwards, organisations must continue to invest in learning and development to maintain their competitive edge, but it will be important they do that in the right way.
The most important thing that organisations can do now is simply to recognise the challenge that they face. Most often, it is action – specifically, wrong action – that leads to a business’s decline; it is rarely inaction.
"...it is action – specifically, wrong action – that leads to a business’s decline; it is rarely inaction."
So, organisations should not bury their heads in the sand and march on with business as usual. Now is the time to pause and take time to work out the next move before committing to action. This isn’t easy, but the rewards will be worth the effort.
The next step for organisations will be to recognise what it is that their future entails. What is it that your stakeholders need, not now, but in the future? What are the future prospects for your business?
The pandemic has created new entrepreneurial opportunities, particularly in the digital sphere, but also entrepreneurship borne of necessity – out of job losses – which often only seeks to increase competition within already crowded marketplaces, rather than driving innovation.
Beyond that, organisations must update their workforce and their capabilities, re-purposing their internal assets and asset configuration to better match the future needs of their stakeholders, designing their capabilities, assets and internal resource around what the future holds instead of the here and now.
Adapted from the full article in Economic Focus.