4 Core Challenges for Business Leaders in COVID-19 Crisis [+How to Fix It]
Posted on May 5, 2020 By Krunal Soni
Let’s set this blog with clear expectations.
Who should read this blog?
This blog is going to be useful for the
● Chief Human Resources Officers(CHROs)
● Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs)
● Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs)
Because, in this blog, we have mentioned four challenges. Each of these challenges are associated with the profiles we have mentioned.
Let’s start with a great short story.
Not sure if you have heard it, but this will encourage you during this COVID-19 pandemic.
Airbnb, one of the best apps for the travellers, started in 2008, during the great recession when Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia identified an opportunity in the renting niche.
You know the opportunity they have created, you know its current valuation. Wait. Let us share the data and graph to make it easier for you to understand.
Airbnb current valuation: $26 billion
Here is the chart of Airbnb’s growth, year by year.
Why are we sharing this data?
What are we trying to say?
We are projecting what great leaders do.
They convert problems into opportunities.
Leaders take actions, solve the hardest problems when everyone is afraid of taking a step.
Coronavirus and pandemic is the perfect time for the leaders. Most of the companies have started lay-offs, frozen hiring, and there are uncertainties in almost every business every single day.
This is the time you can differentiate yourself as a leader, and lead the organization.
The job is not going to be easy. You know it. You know it very well.
You are already facing a lot of challenges, handling your business. Today, we are going to select 4 core challenges and discuss them, one by one. We are also going to share some experience with you that we are using currently to manage this pandemic situation.
These 4 are the challenges we are going to discuss today.
- How to encourage a remote workforce?
- How to engage existing clients?
- How to protect your data against cybersecurity risks?
- How to grow business during COVID-19 pandemic?
Of course, if you are managing a business, you might be facing a lot of other challenges, but let’s focus and discuss these 4 challenges today.
1) How to encourage a remote workforce?
Challenge: COVID-19 has changed everything about how we work in a team.
Earlier, it was easy to identify the challenges, communicate it with the team members, collaborating, making sure everyone got the idea, and keeping everyone on the same page.
During COVID-19, it’s becoming hard for the leaders to identify challenges, to address it with the team members, to collaborate, and to keep everyone on the same page. All these situations lead to a down graph in productivity.
How can employees deliver their best when they are not in a situation to deliver the best? It is a challenge for Chief Human Resources Officers(CHROs) and Team Leads to encourage the team members, set the expectations and get the best result together.
How to tackle it?
- Keep your employees engaged and connected using different team-building activities on Skype or Zoom. Making collaboration fun.
- Communicate regularly to make sure they are doing well and are not facing any challenges. Even a sense of belonging solves a lot of problems. Call them once in a week.
- Offer flexibility that doesn’t hamper the results.
- Build an open feedback system where employees can address their challenges
These are the least steps you must take for the employees, to keep them engaged and encouraged. Employees are the one of the important assets for any organization, no doubt about it. What keeps them in the organization? What keeps the company running? A steady cash flow from the clients. Then how can we miss that part? So our next topic for the discussion will be how to engage clients?
2) How to engage existing clients?
Challenge: US economy shrinks 4.8% in the first three months of the year 2020. There is a global slowdown. Conditions are getting worse, in fact. During this time, it’s hard for any Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) or for any organizations to keep clients engaged, to keep them motivated for the business investment. How to keep the current clients on board? How to set a feedback system for the clients to make sure they can address their challenges?
How to tackle it?
- Put yourself in customer’s shoes. Know their challenges, and try identifying the solution with the product or service you are providing.
- Be transparent when it comes to idea validation. From your experience, if you see there is a scope of loss, address it to your clients in advance. Let them use your experience as their safe side.
- Make communication as your core strength to keep the current clients engaged. Set the feedback system and set the higher priority to it.
You are taking care of your employees, taking care of your clients, but what about your data? Yes. What about your intellectual property? What are your plans to save your data against cybercriminals? In the next topic, we are going to discuss the data protection challenge for the organization, and what security measures must be taken.
3) How to protect your data against cybersecurity risks?
Challenge: It all happened suddenly, a quick shift to work from home. That didn’t give organizations a chance to think about critical cyber security and cybercriminals challenges. Coronavirus got global in February. Since then, IBM X-Force has observed a 4,300 percent increase in coronavirus-themed spam. That left a lot of unaddressed questions for the Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs), like how to protect data against cybercriminals? How to make data on fingertips when required? What security measures must be taken before allowing work from home?
How to tackle it?
- Hire cybersecurity consultant for the initial phase. Identify the loopholes in the current system, and then set up your virtual environment in a way that protects your system, your data against cybercriminals.
- Spreading awareness of potential cyber threats to the employees. Ask your consultant to make a checklist that every employee must follow as a process of precautions.
- Stick to approved applications and systems and train your employees on how to use them securely.
For the last point, Zoom fits the best as an example.
Recently, on April 28th, an Intel warned Zoom could be vulnerable to foreign surveillance.
— Katherine Faulders (@KFaulders) April 28, 2020
Just for the reference, here is the graph of Zoom’s rapid growth.
Zoom’s comparison with Netflix and Amazon will give you a broad idea.
When such a popular application becomes the target, for any Information Security Officers, securing office data, making sure it is inaccessible to anyone outside the organization, is challenging.
Consider securing your data, your intellectual property as a long-term investment. When the core challenge is to keep the business survive and grow, we must also address and discuss how to grow a business. How to open the door of different opportunities? That’s going to be our last topic today, last challenge for the CEOs.
4) How to grow business?
Challenge: Coronavirus has impacted a lot of industries like Travel, Tourism, Sports, Entertainment, and Retail. Indirectly, this will impact almost all the businesses around the world. In fact, the World Economic Outlook projected global economy growth in 2020 to fall down by 3 percent, that is -3 percent. The challenge for the CEOs is how to grow business during this pandemic? How to get more clients on board? How to bring food on the table?
How to tackle it?
- Go digital. Re-evaluate your marketing strategy. Because of global lockdown, when everyone is isolated, the internet has become one of the best friends, the best chance to reach your audience.
- Cut the extra expense. Remember a penny saved is a penny earned.
- Identify tasks that can be outsourced with less budget, requires less observation, and outsource it.
Of course, these steps vary by industries, but investing into digital marketing can definitely help you to grow your business at a certain level.
That’s all for today.
Being a digital marketing agency, we are going to share our experience on how to use digital marketing to grow your business during COVID-19. If you want to get the notification for the next blog directly in your inbox, make sure you subscribe. Or write your email address in the comment section. We will make sure to update you when we publish a new blog, a new experience on our website.
As a leader, you will face a lot of challenges, no doubt in it. The only difference is how you take that challenge and convert it into the opportunities. The opportunities for you, and the opportunities for your team members. There is an inspirational phrase that will keep you hustling during this pandemic period. “No problem, no progress.”
What are the other challenges are you facing currently?
How are you managing your team and organization?
What changes have you done so far?
Don’t miss to share it in the comment section.