Times are tough for organisations at the moment. Many need to change but are struggling to justify bringing in external expertise when they have furloughed people. However, there is another way to benefit from this expertise.
It is clear that few organisations were fully resilient when the crisis struck. When banks failed in the 2008 financial crisis, Governments insisted they bolstered their capital reserves to prevent another catastrophe. If and when the same circumstances reoccur I expect shareholders to adopt a similar stance so that a ‘Covid 20’ doesn’t have the same impact.
Customers’ behaviour and their expectations changed during lockdown. Most us went on a 12 month digital training course compressed into four weeks. Our relationship with work, home, shopping and the daily commute changed forever.
Therefore, many organisation will change their business models to reflect these consumer needs. Unlike previous recessions, they will have to do this at pace to avoid being last to the party.
Organisations know they need to change but there may be more pressing issues right now. Revenues for many have been reduced dramatically and so they have used the furlough scheme. Unfortunately, some have had to reduce their headcount and people are losing their jobs.
Previously, before we knew about Coronavirus, organisations brought in specialist expert resource to help them safely deliver change. But it is very difficult to bring in outsiders to do that now without sending the wrong message to their staff.
Yes, to say ‘so what?’ is a fair challenge. We are in a similar situation to all recessions (and I am old enough to have been through several). It all worked out in the end.
But now, every sector and every region is in the same boat. This time, the competitive pressure to adapt and retain customers is massive. Change projects must be done soon and at pace. And probably as homework, on top of the day job.
If the option of external specialist expertise, brought in to help directly, is unavailable, there are other ways to reduce risk.
Have you thought about mentoring?
Obviously, this is still a ‘paid for’ option using external specialist expertise, but it is less cost than the traditional on-site version.
There are two methods:
You may have people who manage projects for you in your business. You may use a sound methodology, e.g. Prince2. It is probable that the changes I talk about above are quite complex, big and strategic. Is your internal team used to this type of work?
If not, we can help bridge the gap between your internal team / process and what you’d expect from an external project leader. This enables you to reduce the risk of failure, and, of course, help bring projects in on time and on budget.
This, of course, can work across all of your projects and with multiple project managers.
Your project might be really complex, very big and business critical. It may be fully resourced by your internal team. But, same question. Are they used to this type of change?
If not, we can help the project sponsor, who has overall responsibility, by acting as a sounding board. We can help the business lead, who is responsible for delivering the business change. And, of course, we can support the project manager, as well as the subject matter experts and workstream leads.
We help by constructing a bespoke programme based on the needs of your business. This can be a combination of one to ones or group sessions, run in whichever way suits your business. We have many years of experience running remote mentoring programmes if that is required in the short term.