Protect, Survive and Prepare

I launched ProjectTalks Virtual this past week.  I must say, running a conference virtually is not easy.  We certainly ran into our fair share of technical issues – but learned lots. Preparation is now in the works for ProjectTalks II. 

My session at this event was on strategic thinking and I was about to present my usual take on the need for all of us to think strategically about our organizations, our careers and our lives. 

But then Covid-19 hit, and everything changed. Now the discussion about strategic thinking changes to one of protection, survival and the future.   So, to prepare for version II of my speech, I turned to a great friend for some input.

Bruce Harbinson is a Regional Chair with TEC Canada. TEC offers a peer advisory board for CEO’s and business owners with one-to-one coaching, expert speakers, fast-paced learning and global networking.  Bruce runs two TEC CEO groups and a Key Executive group comprising over 30 different businesses.

I asked Bruce what his CEO members were thinking these days.   He broke it down into three strategic streams. 

  1. Protect – Think Now. Immediately deal with your most important asset – your people. Your team members or employees need attention now.  Fear, anxiety, change, adaptation and more will play on all of us as we fight our way through these months.  Some people had to be let go or laid off. Others will be asked to do something radically different than what they were doing yesterday.  Regardless of the immediate outcome, we need to look after our people with transparency, compassion, and consideration.
  1. Survive – Think Tomorrow. Look at tomorrow and think agility and adaptation. No one wants to be accused of taking advantage of the situation, but we should be looking at the current state of affairs and asking ourselves, is what we are doing now the best thing we should be doing – for our organization, for our customers and for our employees?  If any of these answers are no – we need to pivot and do something different or something new. 
  1. Prepare -Think One Year Out. While we don’t know what this time next year will look like, we can take a few educated guesses. Bruce’s clients are coming up with as many scenarios as they can and creating alternate plans for each.  This part is critical to the life of any of our organizations going forward.  If we are not prepared for the eventual outcome, others in our sector will be and we will suffer.

Bruce’s clients, and you, need to protect your most important asset.  Your people deserve your best in this very difficult time.  Stay agile and be prepared for whatever the future holds for us.

Protect, Survive and Prepare.

By the way, I will be posting my interview with Bruce next week.   Stay tuned.


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