Many business leaders face extreme challenges during their careers, but the coronavirus pandemic is uncharted waters for all.
Most offices and stores are slowly reopening across the U.S. Companies still operating are mostly working remotely, and many are doing business differently to adjust to the new normal. As uncertainty continues to reign, how should leaders respond to new fiscal challenges, and what guidelines should they follow?
Companies around the world are reevaluating how they do business to overcome the challenge that we all face at this moment. Times of crisis are when the best leaders step up, calm their workforce, believe in their capabilities, and go beyond the norm to influence changes that make a company more robust for the long haul.
While the health and well-being of team members have to be leadership’s primary concern, it’s never been more critical to find new and creative ways to meet revenue goals. Challenging times is when innovation is often born, and that starts with leaders who won’t be paralyzed by problems, but rather see them as opportunities to grow.
Here are five tips to help business leaders navigate this unprecedented time:
Turn to your core values. A company’s core values act as a compass in stormy seas, Newman says, bringing some stability and helping maintain direction even while waves of uncertainty approach. Your unchanging core values provide clarity amid the turbulence. They serve as a framework to inform your decision-making process, especially during periods of uncertainty.
Be strong and honest. Leaders who are best prepared to get through a crisis have an excellent level of resiliency. They have mental discipline, accept life’s insecurities, and don’t panic when the storm hits. The next step is committing to transparency with employees. Share your thoughts, concerns, and encouragement, and reinforce the company values.
Learn, invite new ideas, and adjust. A crisis causes leaders to reevaluate processes and consider improvements tailored to a changing business climate. It’s imperative to learn from the current crisis, and, from your data, determine what your company can do differently to adjust. Embrace it as an exciting opportunity to innovate and be better. Solicit ideas from your most trusted people. Look at new services and products you could create. Everything from what you sell to how you deliver it might be on the table for a change.
Be extra resourceful. One thing we learned during the last recession is how to be resourceful. Now is the time to reorganize and refocus to achieve lean and efficient business operations. Develop a plan to reduce costs without interrupting critical business functions. Reach out to your network and external partners to leverage any resources you may have outside of the company. Empower all team members and leaders at your company to exercise a new level of responsibility.
Increase and improve communication. Communication with team members, clients, and external partners is paramount. There’s no reason you can’t enhance communication despite the current circumstances. Increase the use of technology to stay in front of clients, including video conferencing, emails, and even text messages when appropriate. Work with your business leadership to develop the proper communication plan for your business.
How a company overcomes significant challenges determines what type of company they are. As leaders step up and guide a company through, they develop deeper leadership capabilities that will last long beyond the current crisis. Likewise, their company will be stronger for it.
Jadon Newman is the founder and CEO of Noble Capital (www.noblecapital.com). With a 20-year career in real estate and finance, he specializes in private lending, private equity, investment real estate, and strategic venture capital.