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The opinions of the employees of s You are personal.
One of the first lessons from the corona virus is that you can never plan all.
However, the following lesson should give us hope. At the very least, we can be more resilient when there are large and unexpected faults that will inevitably occur.
I see it firsthand. I used to be a design director at IBM Watson and now I work in the real estate sector.
As officers issued orders social distancing and isolationThis increased pressure on homeowners and the reduced traffic in commercial areas made us think about how we could become more resilient.
Our bottom line is that we shouldn’t waste any more time planning ahead.
Instead, we have established a “now, then, later” framework to make decisions in times of crisis. Despite the pandemic, we are making efficient progress today on issues that we have control over, and we are saving valuable time by sticking to changes that may occur in the near future.
Which comes first?
“Now, then, later” It is an uncomplicated time management strategy. His job is to get people to immediately focus on urgent things, stay alert to things that need to be addressed tomorrow, and postpone dealing with contingencies that depend on unknown factors.
Notice how each step has subtasks. To know what a company’s resources now require, managers need to be able to effectively collect information inside and outside the workplace. Which employees are following customers, investors, suppliers and other stakeholders during the crisis? Are managers aware of public policies that change daily? Are front-line employees trained in best practices? The answers to these questions cannot wait.
The same thoughts apply to determine what comes next. To take the next step, leaders need to develop mechanisms to prioritize short-term and long-term goals. Can CEOs rely on internal structures that enable them to make decisions and implement them smoothly and on schedule? Or should they have meetings that can be cumbersome but lead to better decisions and task lists due to the iterative process of finding solutions?
Finally, it is important to postpone some decisions until later. This is the only way to maximize a company’s response to the things that need to be done from time to time.
But … is the planning bad?
In normal times, all companies should have a plan. However, you cannot plan against contingencies if the business climate can change, if new laws and regulations apply or, as we have seen in the current crisis, the threat to public health continues to grow. At this point, planning is a waste of time.
Then what is to be done? Responds quickly. Invest resources in things that help you immediately. That way, you won’t waste time or money checking outdated plans.
This strategy is not about resigning responsibilities, but postponing unanswered questions until the time is right to resolve them. How do you know when the time is right? You will understand perfectly if you have recorded exactly what needs to be solved nowwhat can be solved thenand not waste energy on problems that you know you can solve later.
How do fighter pilots do it?
The U.S. Air Force has a conceptual model for fighter pilots called OODA, “Observe, Lead, Decide, and Act” that could help you think through crisis management. The most important step in the cycle is to orient or catalog weaknesses, strengths, prejudices, previous experiences and current analyzes and then apply them to what you have in front of you. In other words, if you know your mission and you and your team are honest and transparent with each other and have highlighted what is urgent and what is not, you should know what needs to be done now and what can be moved to later.
For example, think about how risk managers surprisingly focus on contingent liabilities that affect their specific industries. Financial institutions monitor their debt ratios in the event of a credit crunch. Technology companies improve their security to prevent hacks. Manufacturers have backup providers in case of bottlenecks.
The fact is that planning is important.
But when something extreme or unprecedented happens, these plans often fail because they want to normalize business again and not deal with the kind of massive disruption that no one could be prepared for.
If managers know the direction of the company, they can implement the “now, then and then” immediately. In this way, they can quickly separate urgent needs from less urgent needs and control the storm while in it.
The point here is not to understand uncertainty, but to implement a model to think about times when it is easy to get out of your mind. Right now it’s best to put this five-year plan aside and prepare for corners that we can’t predict.