The destruction caused by the traditional World Wars saw the devastation of economies and creation of the Bretton Woods Twins; the World Bank & IMF. The damage was enormous yet tangible, and thus an economic map existed to direct efforts to give velocity to the western economies. A boost to Global Trade through Collaboration & Reconstruction was the key. For long, the World operated on the economic models of globalization and restructuring Nations based on fiscal & trade policies professed by IMF & WTO. Today economies though robust in terms of models and frameworks seem extremely fragile to face pandemics and economic warfare. COVID19 and the times to come, shall continually redefine the template of doing business in this “globalized borderless interconnected competitively fragile World” that we are a part of.
So, the question is, why does bio-economic warfare create a chaos of magnitudes not envisaged before. For one, the damage is not tangible; it is very subtle to begin with and to a large extent, invisible till the wheels are set into motion. The bio-economic warfare has the capacity to paralyze the interconnected economies and supply chains coupled with unforeseen stress on National resources such as healthcare and public utilities. The Nations collectively and individually have to battle the social and economic distress while organizations have to deal with their inability to cope with unanticipated ambiguities. The business world as we see grapples with specific critical issues:
- The ever-successful frameworks, logic, systems, processes and work designs which were so predictably templatized don’t work anymore.
- There is a profound psychological impact globally that alters the overall needs.
- There is a diminished ability and willingness that impacts economic demand drastically
- The World unpredictably develops new behaviours & habits spontaneously.
- One can see Individual and collective Psychological unrest and fear of the unknown
- The underlying forces of globalized borderless economies start triggering conflicting distortions to establish equilibrium of global trade.
A very interesting outcome of this warfare is that everything seems like, it will get going soon superficially but the flywheel of business jams over this short time and to give it momentum is like giving it a velocity while it has changed its axis. So, the misdirected thrust does not move the flywheel at all. A correction of this misdirected thrust is the key.
While the elements of Macro-Economics are dealt with through inducing liquidity and soaps for demand creation, however the businesses experience a state of chaos and ambiguity unseen before. The organizations of the globalized World are so business process-driven, and the habit of incremental Innovation termed as continuous improvement does not crank up the system. Corporate Leaders now need to re-wire their neural pathways. The conditioned pathways don’t work anymore. But the pathways are so strong that they unconsciously keep directing actions which just don’t work. This situation thus needs Business Mentors to help challenge thoughts and programmed behaviors to navigate through the ambiguity in an informed manner.
Organizations post this intangible devastation that the bio-economic warfare creates, need to reinvent themselves. The World around changes drastically and evolves new paradigms and needs. This demands not only Innovation but resources of experienced professionals who are adept at empowering organizations for this change. These are Domain Mentors within the organizations who can throw up and channel disruptive ideas of evolution and see them through. These are role models that people have faith in. They may also be a set of retired professionals who may need to be called back. Most prospective Mentors post-retirement move into academics. These are Business Academicians who can help turn around things. Role models instill hope that propels change and outcomes.
The Business World will thus see an ever-increasing demand for Business-Academic Mentors whose diversity of professional experience and wisdom of academic research will help resurrect businesses. Interestingly, the Pre-COVID19 World was all about business coaches. The Post-Covid19 World is all about Business-Academic Mentors.
So how do Mentors differ from coaches? Mentors come with a diversity of research and practical experiences. They are the ones who work on the entire Value Chain of the organization and required behavioral modification. They may or may not be domain experts, but they are surely business savvy. While they do analyze and interpret the leading indicators and provide prescriptive inputs at the organization level, they also partner with the CEO and business leaders in the organizational transformation process.
CEO’s will need Mentors as would the Senior Leadership. The devastation of bio-economic warfare needs Mentors who are organization builders. The enormous uncertainty and the redefinition of business processes with augmented technology requires a very different approach in this new adjusted World. Nations will soon see the emergence of such Mentors who will play a critical role in positive reconstruction while the doom forecasters will keep everyone on their tenterhooks.
So, what should the organizations do to resurrect themselves from the devastation created by this new method of warfare? We discuss some salient factors.
- Use your organization’s sense of purpose as your radar.
- Understand & accept the new reality of human interactions.
- Reinvent your value chain.
- Do away with what is not going to work.
- Redefine organization behaviors and work designs.
- Support people in their Psychological turbulence.
- Build and reinforce the new logic for success.
- Leverage on technology extensively.
- Operate on hope; everything changes and gets to a new equilibrium.
- Innovate extensively and rapidly and make it the new norm.
- Set change process in motion.
- Get Mentors for sure.
The planet has seen turbulence many a times, and there is also an abundant wealth of intelligence both inside and outside of the organizations. It is essential to understand that to get moving resurrection is the key which needs a diversity of experience and talent. Once the new order sets in the demand picks up, but the issue is how many organizations are equipped to satisfy the new adjusted needs. Those who will shall flourish while others will become a part of history and case studies of termination.
The pertinent question therefore is; Are you Mentor Ready Organization and Leader?