We all know that adapt and survive is the name of the game when it comes to business. But what happens when the thing you have to adapt to is a global pandemic? For many companies, the answer was: not much. Their business continuity plans failed them, leaving them scrambling to catch up.
The thing about business continuity plans is that they are notoriously under-tested. Almost every organization has a plan and almost nobody runs regular tests. This became abundantly clear during the rapid forced transition to company-wide work from home so many organizations experienced in mid-March.
For those companies who were able to adapt quickly, the key was in their flexibility. They had plans in place that could be executed quickly and efficiently, with little to no disruption. They also had the foresight to realize that the world was changing and that their plans needed to change with it.
Today leaders are grappling with the next big question: should remote workers come back to the office? Months have gone by, and the great resignation keeps rolling along. Some people thought that people would come flocking back to the office once invited back. Wrong. The fact is, corporate America is likely changed forever.
“You're making a huge mistake if you require folks back in office full time because they see progress most companies have made in the last two years, and they'll ask, 'why?'” - Amy Zimmerman, Chief People Officer, Relay Payments.
Leaders will need to be strategic about their decisions and understand that the way we work may have changed forever. The pandemic has forced employees to re-evaluate what is essential, and for many, working in an office five days a week is no longer a necessity. It's up to leaders to decide what's best for their teams, but they will need to keep in mind that the world of work has changed forever and there may be no going back.
By Dean Miles
Keywords: Business Continuity, Business Strategy, Health and Safety