Paola Fonseca SAB Marketing Connection Senior Partner
Covid-19 undoubtedly brought fundamental changes to the way companies operate and do business.
Every organization, to a greater or lesser extent, is essentially made up of human beings, hence, the pandemic has affected each one of our team members in different ways, and when it comes to this new reality that we are now all facing, there is no single policy or standard that will work for everyone. However, it is time for us entrepreneurs and corporate leaders to organize, rethink, and redetermine our priorities, write down ideas and evaluate what we wish to change, because the "business as usual" has evolved towards a model of “Conscious Companies," which ultimately gives way to a true humanization of them:
A fundamental aspect is the prioritization of personal and family well-being as part of the new “business as usual”. How? Eliminating, for example, non-essential meetings, being flexible in terms of schedules and demand for presence, allowing meeting-space (generally at the beginning) to seek confirmation of the health and safety of the employees' families, as well as providing them the space, resources and permission to handle living in the new reality. The way companies treat their employees during the pandemic will significantly influence future facts including engagement, work environment and even brand value.
Create open and transparent communication channels. Internal “social networking” is key and becomes even more so for sharing news, asking questions and seeing answers. Things for which internal social networks were not usually used today must be open to change.
Efforts aimed at promoting diversity and inclusion will become even more valid not only in companies but in society in general.
Digitize processes to make remote work easier. If the companies had still operated based on paper, the remote work that was generated from the pandemic would not have been possible. It is imminent to accelerate the implementation of applications to digitize even the simplest. It has been shown that the companies that operated the best were those where the level of digitization was higher, there the work-from-home process was more natural. It is important to innovate and teach employees how to use digital media more and better at work,
Implement the use of tools that make collaboration processes between teams simple. Working remotely makes collaboration difficult. Make it easy to find information quickly, seek zero inbox, approval processes with minimal signatures and bureaucracy.
The workplace has changed a lot and you have to develop new skills to lead a team from a distance. Definitely the new normal involves the management of teams remotely and the title of boss placed on a screen is worthless unless there is a new form of communication and it is possible to inspire with the example even without having physical contact with the teams. Organizations should be inspired to find new ways to operate and implement tools that help people work together without physical contact.
During times like this, human beings bring out the best in themselves, giving way to true leaders to emerge, and those people who inspire through example and manage to capitalize on the positive in circumstances. Our fundamental challenge as business leaders will be to make our teams feel valued, protected and committed.