COVID-19 is first and foremost a human and public health tragedy. As the likelihood of prolonged social-distancing measures increases in Wisconsin, across the U.S., and around the world, the virus could have a significant impact on business and on the economy.
Understanding and responding to the business risks is rapidly becoming an imperative for businesses of all sizes. And the timeline for companies to react is quickly shrinking.
Guidance and advice are popping up everywhere through webinars, articles, interviews, checklists and more. We’ve summarized a few that we have found beneficial, and we hope you find them helpful, too.
Understand your risks
Global strategy giant PwC developed a dedicated tool to help businesses assess and manage risk. PwC’s COVID-19 Navigator tool consists of a series of questions to help business leaders act decisively by generating insights about where their company stands in six key areas:
Crisis management and response
Operations and supply chain
Finance and liquidity
Tax and trade
Strategy and brand
Click here to take PwC’s COVID-19 Navigator assessment.
KPMG’s Global Head of Insolvency, Blair Nimmo, writes that “your first priority is to quickly stabilize cash and liquidity and take a realistic view of current options.” He proposes businesses consider five steps to turn things around:
Identify options: quickly and effectively assess your options
Stabilization: steady the business and assess its financial position
Turnaround strategy: calculate financial paybacks of various options
Execution: ensure full delivery of the turnaround plan
Value realization: understand risks and costs of each option, including contingency plans
Make good decisions
Decision-making during a crisis of uncertainty is precarious for even the most seasoned leaders. McKinnsey & Co write that the typical approach for most companies is far too slow to keep up with the pace of change and the turbulence we’re experiencing, caused by COVID-19. To help, the company developed a framework to support businesses make bold decisions in uncertain times.
Take a breath and take stock
Involve more people, not fewer
Make the critical small choices
Set up a nerve center
Empower leaders with judgment and the right character
Go big or go home (take bold and rapid actions)
Create new opportunities
Billionaire Mark Cuban recently took to Linkedin to answer questions by small business owners and provided advice on how to navigate the COVID-19 crisis.
He recommended brainstorming not only with your peers but also with your competitors. “They are all in the same boat. Try to figure out the best way to reignite the industry,” said Cuban.
Part of his advice is to really get to know your employees. That way, “if you do have to change circumstances, you can make decisions based on the circumstances of each employee.”
And, see this as an opportunity to revisit parts of the business you haven’t had time for and to connect with customers. “Rather than focusing on how bad it is, focus on how you can use this time to connect with your future customers,” Cuban wrote. “This is also a good time to clean up all the little messes every small business has. Everyone has things they wish they could re-do.”
“Now is the time to make those changes.”
Kathleen Elsig is Kane’s senior advisor of corporate responsibility and partnership advisor. She has 20 years of international experience working with businesses, communities, non-profits and academic institutions to build partnerships that solve complex business and social challenges.
This as an opportunity to revisit parts of the business you haven’t had time for and to connect with customers.