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What Should Businesses Be Doing Post-Pandemic?

There is a lot of talk about what the new ‘normal’ will look like and what businesses should be doing in order to make it through. The conversations within Government and Senior Leaders of organisations are shifting from containment and avoidance of COVID-19 to balancing the economy and a potential recession.

I was recently invited to attend the CEO Voice boardroom lunch series, joining some of WA’s captains of industry, while we discussed the need for the government and various sectors to get ‘bold’ and go for growth. The intel and conversation around the table, highlighting some of the biggest challenges within areas such as Iron Ore, Petroleum, Construction, Property, Aviation, Metro Government, Housing, Aged Care and Medical Services, were endless but the opportunities are equally there for the taking.

Throughout the conversation, I got excited to hear some amazing ideas that will really enlighten and lead the change that is required to create the new ‘normal’, but these come with some risk, fear and the ability to move faster, at a different pace. The words adaptability, resiliency, sustainability, looking further forward, change, risk management, mental health, depression and nervousness were agreed upon across the table as being required to really make this happen.

Most of us agree that these are the skills that are required to survive and deliver during unexpected and challenging times, but how will we actually make this happen? It’s easy to say “We need to be bold”, “We need to be adaptable and resilient”, but where do we start?

While many of us feel like we have the answers to our current challenge, there is only one place to start; in each of our minds.

Our human mind has a need and desire for certainty.

To know the answers, understand what is coming, the why, the how and the when? Lack of certainty is one of the most common fears. Couple this with the fear of failure as we go into this, not knowing the answers to our when, why and how, makes that fear of failure even greater.

We know that change is one of the greatest challenges for any organisation to implement in the best of circumstances let alone in the middle of a pandemic with a major lack of certainty and answers. The unknown is taking over many people’s subconscious mind creating limitations, blockers and extreme emotional reactions/decisions. This is the first step that we need to focus on before we can even consider asking people to be “bold” or “brave”. Humans need assistance to gain back control of their mind and their emotions before any industry or sector can expect them to buy-in to the future.

Every industry, product and sector was created to satisfy a human emotional need or driver.

Every single one of them. There is nothing that has been created that’s original purpose wasn’t to satisfy an emotional outcome for a human.

Now is the time that we strip back the ‘busy’, and the processes, to rediscover the original purpose of why every industry, product and sector was created in the first place. This is the time that we remind ourselves that everything that is functioning is either ran by or has been programmed by a human mind. In order to get our industries, products and sectors back functioning and growing, we must get the human mind and emotions back in order first. The humans that are creating and working in them, and the humans that are purchasing and utilising the services.

Actionable Tips For Your Post-Pandemic Business

  • Identify the current mindset of your teams and your ideal customers. Every person responds slightly different and is likely to be at different stages of the Mindset Disrupt Process: Own It, Face It, Feel It, Ask It and Drive It. What are their current biggest fears? What is the question that they might be requiring the answer to? What is the elephant in the room? It’s not until we can mitigate what is using most of their current mindpower, that we can help their minds to move through the process and get ready to ‘Drive It’.
  • What is our core purpose? What changes are required and what are ALL of the options? As humans, it is common for us to jump straight to the vehicle/delivery or the solution, thinking it will solve everyone’s problems. Keep an open mind and go through the ‘discovery’ phase, including the core purpose and all available options, before reaching the ‘solution’. This discovery phase should include input from all stakeholders. Involving our teams and customers in this process helps them to progress their minds through the thought process, allowing time to process and understand the ‘y’ rather than just the final decision.
  • Don’t ‘cookie cutter’ the implementation. 

    Change is, always has been, and always will be the greatest challenge to implement in most businesses and for humans to accept. Identify how our teams and customers respond to change and the best way to communicate and implement the change to achieve the desired outcome.

‘If we are going to get through to the other side of this pandemic, we must start with the human mind.’

About the author:

Amy Jacobson is an EI and human behaviour specialist, delivering emotional intelligence insights & workshops across Australia and the international markets.

As the Wiley published Author of ‘Emotional Intelligence: A simple and actionable guide to increasing performance, engagement and ownership’, and a Media Personality across television, radio and print, Amy’s mission is to break down misconceptions around E.I. and help as many people as possible to increase their emotional intelligence.

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