The coronavirus pandemic quickly ushered in new norms, which are probably not going anywhere anytime soon.
This pandemic has proven itself to be unpredictable for even the highly qualified experts. If COVID-19 has shown us anything, it is to be prepared for everything.
Since the coronavirus made its way to the United States, every business, from major corporations to small startups, has had to take on new approaches to everything they do.
As many companies continue to work from home, they are discovering not all of these changes are bad. Instead, several companies and leaders have vowed they are changed for the better. Many organizations have also learned that they haven’t been as ready for emergency-case scenarios as they thought.
Certainly, post-COVID-19 realities have altered everything we do from weddings to grocery shopping, many of which we hope to return to normal at some point. But this pandemic has revealed to many companies that there is a better way to do business and there are ways to be more efficiently prepared for emergencies now in the future.
Since the impact of this pandemic will undoubtedly remain for a time, these skills for the business world are more vital than ever.
Here are three essential skills for new norms:
- Pivoting. Changing the direction of your business is often to protect the company, but it can also lead to greater success. One business that learned the success of pivoting was a gaming company, first called Tiny Speck. This company discovered their team was lacking daily internal communication. So they invented a platform to fix the problem, and soon realized it could be a solution for many companies. Tiny Speck completely changed its business to provide this app and became a $5 billion business known today as Slack. Pivoting is no doubt a risk, but it can often not only lead to protecting your business but also enabling it to flourish.
- Listening. In Thrive Global, Buki Sule wrote, “In business, standing still is often the same as falling behind.” Stopping to listen may feel like a standstill at the moment, but nothing will enable you to make significant changes quite like listening. During the first impacts of COVID-19, the foodservice DoorDash made substantial changes to its model when they learned more local businesses were eager to sign up. DoorDash offered commission relief and marketing support to new and existing partners, giving customers more choice and allowing businesses to receive valuable income. Listening and quickly responding made DoorDash a more reliable service.
- Measuring. Carefully measuring where you’re at and how you got there is a vital skill set for every business. For the at-home workout service Peloton, measuring and monitoring their growth has allowed them to build upon their already successful company. An interview with CNBC reported that “Peloton saw total app downloads increase five times more in March than February.” In the interview, James Hardiman, of financial services and investments company Wedbush Securities, stated, “If you go as far to buy the bike, you’re not somebody who’s planning on going back to traditional fitness patterns, once you’re bought in you’re bought in. That is not a temporary uptick in demand. That will have a lasting impact.” Following the incline of purchases, Peloton increased its app offerings. When you carefully measure your growth and decline, you can more accurately and confidently implement new ventures.
All of these things – pivoting, listening and measuring – aren’t new to the business world. We’ve all been taught them before. But their essential value to leaders, organizations and companies may never ring more true than now.
No doubt, these drastic changes have not been convenient for everyone. Often, the more difficult changes are the ones that bring on the most lasting and impactful gains.