Economic slowdown and widespread uncertainty will test every business after this first wave of COVID. Only through imagination and persistence will senior teams limit financial risks and answer the emerging demands of employees, customers, and society.
Disruption in the economy and society caused by COVID-19 will force companies to rethink their business models, corporate strategies, and day-to-day operations. Teams can navigate this punishing ground by making plans for wildly untameable outcomes.
A sustainable future requires a fresh approach to business, and soon. But new infrastructure and systems alone do not make for a sustainable company. Alongside physical assets sits culture. Change fails when leaders do not account for the hidden influences in how people work.
Can we – and, if so, how might we – advance economic prosperity whilst making responsible use of Earth’s resources? A single person cannot grasp all the – ecological, societal, individual, financial and scientific – variables in play, but seven imperatives will help open a way forward.
Demands within our natural and social worlds are forcing a new reality for business. Boards and senior teams have no choice but to leap from the runaway train of shareholder value.
Well understood business purpose breaks down organisational silos, to unite departments and teams. Clear statements of purpose lead to a more effective organisation.
Your organisation’s ambition to change the world can inspire great accomplishments – but only if people see how their own role fits into the wider purpose. Are your people mopping floors or, as NASA’s janitor believed, sending a man to the moon?
Get everyone on track to a single destination – and work becomes easier, customers get a better deal and shareholders enjoy higher returns. Management exists to agree, set out and champion business purpose.
Leadership does not design new railway carriages, manufacture chocolate biscuits, or answer customers’ phone calls. A successful company sees how leadership steers its organisation. But it also rewards other work, often less valued, that is the real energy behind strong business outcomes.
The world’s expectations of business are changing. To thrive, companies need better, up-to-date answers to the fundamental questions of why they exist, and for whom.
Cooperation, the first problem for every CEO. Where the red tape of bureaucracy fails, culture is a powerful way to engage people and align work with your business purpose.
Commonplace values such as service, integrity, innovation and teamwork show mediocre ambitions. Aspire to a grand purpose? Champion values that are colourful, bold, and unique.
Putting ideas to work
Our thinking is informed by experience in strategy, culture, and leadership within complex multinationals. We help a business master disruption and create lasting value.