Companies and entrepreneurs everywhere saw the market turned upside down by the pandemic. In the midst of the storm many found ways to revamp their product offerings, remake their corporate image, or lower projections and overhead to maintain through the worst of things.
Now, we are beginning to recognize a glimmer of light through the clouds. We may feel like we have made it through the worst of things but there are still changes to consider and plans to make if we are to maintain or regain our forward momentum.
Did you make major changes to your operations? This is the time to determine whether those changes should stick. Are new product offerings going to be sellers in the post-pandemic market? Will newly applied organizational structures continue to serve you as demands change going forward? Planning is an ongoing process in business and in life.
At the beginning of the lock-down I realized there was a need to consider the current landscape. Not everything would continue as usual. In my case, working on a college campus to support student access I had to consider how my staff and student staff could continue to provide the services of our office without coming to our facility. Spring break was ending and the news around the world was not good. So we identified the tools we needed to work remotely, and began a process of training those who had not traveled during the break and established a weekly meeting Zoom to answer questions and provide ongoing production support. Now the “new” process is old hat and the weekly meeting is no longer necessary.
Once we had a process planned we set our feet on solid ground and began to implement ongoing services addressing new needs, spurred by the shift to remote learning, to assure our students continued to have full access to the materials they needed. Throughout the year we answered questions on technology issues, time reporting and reminded students that they could not submit work hours for university closed holidays.
Like you and others in your industries, we had to identify the correct strategies to move through the new work environment effectively, efficiently and with compassion for both our staff and our clients/students. In some cases we found we needed more workers to meet the increased workload caused by the online shift. At the same time, we were able to cross train those who would have been without work because the walk-in crowd no longer existed. As office workers learned production work (creating alternative formats and captions for audio/video materials) our flexibility increased. We learned our production flow is less impacted by time in term with the ability to make assignments to cross trained workers.
Now, the time is again here to plan for next steps. Those actions we took to become remote workers are now facing another change. Students will return to campus and we need to determine how that impacts the work we do going forward.
In your industry the questions I raised at the top of this page may be coming to the forefront. Are new product offerings going to be sellers in the post-pandemic market? Will newly applied organizational structures continue to serve you as demands change going forward?
The answers to these questions will be different for every organization. Just as the answer to the question, do I want to go back into the office 40 hours a week, will be different for every worker. Not everyone thrived in the remote work environment. Not every organizational change will last post pandemic.
If you haven’t already, add questions to your mindfulness times to allow you to picture the future. If you want to work through the process with guidance join me and other professionals in a four week planning process – The Four Rs: Weathering The Storm. The Four R’s is an interactive series (offered at no charge) to help you jump start your professional and organizational recovery.
Join me for one morning each week to transform your professional life. We will meet virtually on Wednesdays beginning July 7th at 9am MST. Use the link to register now.
I look forward to meeting and working with you!