Since the outbreak of war in Ukraine, I’ve often been asked whether it still makes any sense to look into the future. The world is so full of surprises that many things are being questioned. Should we still think and plan for the long term at all when the world can be turned upside down in just a few days and weeks?
In the midth of the pandamic great leaders look ahead.
Besides some general observations like accelerated digitalization, impacts and opportunities are very different for each market. Nevertheless, there is a set of steps leaders should follow to navigate through the crisis and beyond.
As soon as health and safety of employees is secured, liquidity is secured and a sufficient level of operability is achieved, looking ahead and deciding on the way forward is the prime duty of every leader.
This is a long article, so these are the ten steps to navigate through the crisis based on our scenarios (or any other scenarios for that matter):
Develop your own assumptions on intensity, length and consequences of the crisis
Check how your existing future assumptions are affected
Understand the impact of the crisis on market players and market dynamics
Derive assumptions on how the crisis will change your market
Check the viability of your mission and vision and adapt if needed
Identify opportunities during the crisis
Identify opportunities to gain competitiveness from the crisis
Develop contingency strategies for surprising developments
In over 25 years of working with entrepreneurs and managers to better align their businesses with the future, we have learned that even the best vision is useless if you don’t communicate it effectively. And in such a way that it arrives in the minds, hearts and hands of your employees and is consistently aimed at as a vision of the future in day-to-day business. Because without implementation, your vision remains only a dream.
That’s why the work really starts here.
Leave your comfort zone
Take ‘Vision’ literally
Communicate, communicate, communicate.
Stop everything that does not support your mission and vision
Help your employees to recognize their contribution
Give your employees more freedom and responsibility
Encourage positive thinking and action
Identify an accountability partner for your vision
I believe that especially today, when our economy, society and technologies are changing rapidly, at a time when nothing is predictable and no business is safe, we need more people with a strong vision for the future: for themselves, for their companies and for humanity.
Today, I published an article on this topic in the creating corporate cultures blog of the Bertelsmann Foundation.
transformation needs a clear vision. Even in turbulent times, it gives a
company the orientation, orientation and clarity it needs to respond to
external changes and not only survive the change, but actively
participate in shaping it. It gives each individual employee an answer
to the questions “Where do we want to go, who do we want to be in the
future, what do we want to achieve in X years?”