Our Manifesto: Effective DRIVE Leaders

By: Stella Kavali
The shape of things to come for ‘DRIVE’ leaders beyond the immediate shock:                Thoughts to brainstorm further on….


1. You have been operating below capacity for probably quite a while now, if at all, and there is concern of a second wave coming… By now you must have a vague—that’s alright—idea of how to roughly transform your business model. This might include a shift towards online operations, changes in human-resources allocation, and alternative product offerings. Try thinking in terms of local resilience vs global efficiency—when it comes to suppliers etc. Sure, Covid19’s impact varies between countries and industry sectors but remember: the ability to innovate and adapt in a timely manner will separate the sheep from the goats, and it is happening a lot sooner than you think! 



2. In these unprecedented times, companies are settling into unorthodox new routines as the virtual world changes rapidly—nearly as much as the physical one. Remote working, digital social interactions, e-commerce, telecommuting, and e-learning are all here to stay for good and can be beneficial—perhaps even crucial—for the future of your company. Digital resilience and adaptability are key to surviving and thriving in today’s business landscape.



3. In most cases, the sudden fluctuations in demand and the foreseeable continued instability put most companies in a strenuous and uncertain state. This alone will shift the balance of power from companies to consumers. A ‘DRIVE’ leader knows that winning back customer trust and engagement is the biggest challenge there is—this greatly relates to the company’s purpose.



4. Changing your narrative as consumers’ change theirs too is pivotal and will be an inevitable part of a company’s brand in the future. The price of your product is becoming its value, and it is based on this value—your value as a company overall—that you will be judged by your customers. 



5. As we move away from caveat emptor towards the sovereign customer, we still must remind ourselves that our customer may not be a king, but a pauper! Soaring unemployment and plummeting incomes call for a swift departure from planned obsolescence and price as a surrogate indicator for quality. Instead, there will be a call to meet consumers’ needs and wants at a more primitive level—marketing-wise, think small-scale domestic niche, and rise to the challenge.



6. Questions of mobilizing purpose and values do not limit themselves to your customers. Now, more than ever, ‘DRIVE’ leaders start to appreciate the need to change their relationships, and be socially responsible towards their workforce too! Try to be fair in your judgment, use all means available—depending on government policies—to maintain employment for your people. Think in terms of temping, furloughing, remote working, labor exchange, and give a good example by sharing the burden (YES, even consider a pay cut!) Remember, we are all in this together—as shown by the camaraderie that has been developed during these arduous last few months.



7. Solidarity and collaboration go beyond internal and external customers. No doubt, bailouts from governments are essential and ‘DRIVE’ public authority leaders must learn to depend on a country’s industrial structure and shape. Fiscal support of an unparalleled scale is needed in order to fight this painful, long-lasting battle.

#COVID-19 #manifesto #staysafe #stayvivid #vividvibes