A crisis accelerates innovation.

As we’re coming to the end of the year, many of us will reflect on the most unusual year. We’ll review what we’ve learnt, how we’ve grown and what we can continue going forward. This may have been challenging year (to put it mildly). The pandemic and resulting crisis have also highlighted the need for change.

Companies have adjusted, possibly multiple times, their business models this year. Understanding the customer challenges and their priorities has been key in this process. What if your business model, products and services, processes have changed but your employees haven’t?

Solving problems remotely

Working from home may have been offered since March, yet, not everyone feels comfortable. The lack of IT equipment or feeling isolated from their team have impacted the individual’s ability to work efficiently.

Consider holding IT clinics to provide spontaneous help. IT clinics can also be held to refresh and advance employees software skills. Especially when new software has been implemented, hold continuous sessions. Help users become familiar and proficient in the new tools.

Foster remote knowledge sharing

With teams working remotely, spontaneous chats in the pantry may be a thing of the past. Offer virtual water cooler sessions to re-establish the feeling connected and start the exchange of ideas.

Creating repositories of articles, guides and descriptions, to just name a few, allow individuals to research topics on their own. Combining lunch and learn sessions, albeit virtual, can kill two birds with one stone: team bonding and learning. Present a summary of the last webinar that you attended or share an article relevant to your industry.

Understand future workforce needs

While continuous learning is a must, individuals have to learn to cope and manage uncertainty. McKinsey predicted in 2017 that 60% of jobs with at least 30% of constituent activities could be automated by 2030. Organisations can save repetitive work and reskill the affected employees to more meaningful work.

Inditex’ announcement of closing 16% of its retail stores and investing in their online presences will require new skills and capabilities. You may not be able to predict your workforce needs for the next 10 years. Break it down into shorter timeframes.

Review your top performers. How can you give them challenges to grow? What about your employees’ potential? How can you develop these individuals? How can you align their interests and aspirations with your company’s needs?

Go outside your organisation

Collaboration can increase creativity and innovation. Throughout the lockdown, we’ve seen organisations like Aldi and McDonald’s partner to help the end user. With whom would you like to work and not only transform your products and services but also create new employee skills?

Or is an industry-academic partnership more suitable for you? Just recently, Ottawa University and Egypt’s Ministry of Communications and Information Technology signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). They will offer a Master’s degree programme in electrical and computer engineering, supporting the advances of an entire country.

What are you waiting for? The future is now and you can’t afford to be left behind.

We support organisations with customised development programmes for their teams. Contact us and find out how we can support your company.