Business pundits agree that every business is heading for a radically different ‘new normal’, but there’s far less consensus on precisely what this will look like. There’s no model or trend analysis that can help us predict seismic post lockdown shifts in buying behaviour. When our customers don’t even know what they’ll be wanting from us, we really are double guessing.
When facing a threat the first line of defence is always cash-preservation, but true resilience is a lot more than short-term survival. The most threatening period in any downturn is actually the recovery from the slump phase – the bounce – and those with a stronger bounce-back plan thrive better at this crucial moment. True resilience means cutting costs while also investing in re-structuring for this bounce-back. Downsizing and strengthening.
To be truly resilient we must make an educated guess about future demand. If the virus had been waterborne, then our behaviour would have been utterly different, not the social distancing revolution which will continue to influence consumer buying behaviour for years to come. As an airborne infection, the virus catapulted behaviour in the direction it was already heading in…digital.
The big winners in business have leveraged three things; e-commerce, digital media and tech-enabled remote working – in almost everything they do. The head of Barclays now believes that 40% of all UK trade is digitally driven. Business leaders now know, without any doubt that the digital revolution is making a giant leap forwards. A little post lockdown backsliding into old behaviours will never be enough to turn this tide – the digital industrial revolution is the virus we should be most worried about. Every resilient business – however niche or successful, should be investing in digital transformation.
Everyone can start or continue this journey and, step by step, join the elite club of future-proofed as well as virus-resistant businesses. Vaccinate your business today.