The 5 Success Factors to Get You Through the Pandemic.

We already pointed out in our first whitepaper “The golden years are over” that change means new opportunities and that it’s successful companies’ use of innovation which differentiates them from others in this respect. Although it’s difficult for most companies to innovate in the current crisis, it’s certainly not impossible, as shown at the end of the article. In any case, the 5 principles for success are still valid during the pandemic:

  • Strong customer focus

Almost all companies are experiencing challenges that are hard to overcome. Whilst you’re busy reducing costs and optimising cash flow, don’t forget about your customers or suppliers! Communicating with the groups that are crucial to your company’s success is still important in times of crisis. Even if you’re not able to perform to your usual standard, it makes sense to talk about it with those affected. Who knows what insights and opportunities this could bring about?

  • Competent staff

It’s not always possible to be productive when everyone’s working from home. But for lots of jobs, remote working is highly effective. This is an opportunity for decision-makers to try out and learn from new ways of working. It’s especially important to also be able to delegate responsibility to employees in the current situation, as decision-makers can’t resolve all of the changes which are currently materialising each working day on their own, especially if they should be sorted quickly and at short notice. Decision-makers should be focused on getting the company through the pandemic, which means delegating less-important decisions every now and again.

  • High energy

The biggest risk to employee motivation is the uncertainty brought about by the pandemic. Quick successes are needed. Subtasks and short projects will help focus the team and make them proud when things go well. Now is the time for you to celebrate and praise even small successes.

  • Emotional leadership

It’s management’s job during the pandemic to alleviate doubt and to focus employee concentration on what really counts right now. Communicate regularly and positively, and paint a picture for after the pandemic, in which you’ll have successfully overcome any challenges. Be resolute, but careful at the same time. Nobody said that management was easy.

  • Collaborations & partnerships

Is now not the right time to talk about collaborations or build new partnerships? Although funding for certain projects is currently unclear, you should continue ongoing discussions. I’d even like to explicitly tell you to start new ones. What was previously impossible may well be possible during the pandemic. New circumstances generate new perspectives and ideas. How are two companies to know how they could support each other by collaborating, if they’ve not even talked about it?

Chances can come from anywhere, at any time. Often from where you least expect. Don’t let the pandemic discourage you, and especially, make sure to give off a confident image. Think about what you want to make out of the lemons that life has given you: sour juice that’ll drink through puckered lips, or delicious lemonade?

Bionade, Germany’s leading soft drink brand, actually originated from a brewery that was about to go broke, which broke all the rules with a radical idea, born out of sheer necessity. Not only did they work with fruits which had hardly been used before like lychee and elderflower, they also sold their soft drinks in beer bottles and got rid of their advertising budget. Instead, they relied on strong branding and word of mouth.

Stay brave, cautious, agile and healthy.