Are You Ready To Face The Challenges Coming In The Coming Months? How You Can Keep Productivity Levels Up Post-Lockdown
Right now, the last thing we want to be talking about is more problems for businesses. We want to be focusing on the positives, because how long has it been since we have had some genuine positives to focus on? In a lot of ways, it feels like we have been in lockdown forever, with the slow progression of lifting restrictions only serving to remind us of how unlike normality the situation still is. But every business owner knows that preparing for the hard times is how you can make the most of the good ones. Even as things seem significantly better right now, we know that there are plenty more challenges to come.
So, with those restrictions lifting, more and more people around the world getting their vaccines, travel opportunities opening up and the office returning in full swing, now is the perfect time for us all to take a breath and try and think about the future. We have made it through one of the most challenging periods in recent history and, if you’re reading this, your business did too.
Now is the time to think seriously about how you are going to make your business strong enough to survive the next year and thrive in the months ahead. Productivity can be difficult to maintain when you are constantly worried about another new problem, so here are a few things you should start planning, for now, to make sure you keep things moving ahead
Are You Ready For Another Potential Lockdown?
How many businesses can honestly say that productivity did not take a hit when we all started working from home? The UK’s economy shrank as a result of the pandemic, and the effect it had on businesses and workers alike. Of course, some companies managed the transition better than most and were back up to speed in about a week or so. Others are still finding it hard to hit the same kind of productivity numbers they were used to before the pandemic began. As excited as a lot of us are about the prospect of returning to the office, we cannot simply assume that there is no chance of a return to remote working at some point in the not-too-distant future. Can your business afford to suffer the same kind of slow-down that it did last spring?
Now, some businesses are avoiding this issue by getting rid of their office entirely. Remote working may indeed be the way of the future, but if you are set on bringing everyone back into the office, then you need to make sure that you have a back-up plan in place just in case things do go south once again. Investing in good project management software now may well save you a lot of communication headaches further down the line. Making sure that your employees have the hardware and equipment they need ahead of time will cost you money, but it will avoid you having to address the issue if we get back to the point where deliveries are not a sure thing once again.
Do You Have Enough Cover For Employee Absences?
This sounds like such a simple question, but we all had to learn how to be versatile and flexible over the course of the pandemic in this area. Before the pandemic, it was much easier to anticipate the usual times of the year when you’d start to see people going off sick. Once flu season hit, it was much easier to have a plan in place for allocating work and ensuring that one or two people losing a couple of days didn’t impact the workflow too much. Now, of course, things are much different.
We are looking at so many more potential issues, from people having to self-isolate after coming into contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, to people having to home-school their kids during school closures, to some people having to take long leaves of absence for mental health reasons. We all need to be able to support our team, and we need to make sure that we have enough flexibility ingrained in the way that it is set up that these absences don’t lead to serious issues. Work on scenarios and think about how your business can absorb the impact of several people being absent at any one time.
Are You Doing Enough To Prepare For Market’s New Challenges?
We have all seen drastic changes across the business landscape over the last year or so. Some have come about as a direct result of the pandemic and its impact on businesses. We’re all fighting a lot harder to stay afloat and it is fiercely competitive out there. New technology is opening up new opportunities and making it more important than ever to be on the cutting edge, rather than getting left behind.
And it’s not all about tools that we can buy, or resources that we can use. We are seeing far greater awareness of cultural issues such as the importance of diversity and the need for greater understanding of mental health. Being a leader in this constantly shifting landscape is something that requires such a varied skill set, where empathy and understanding are as important as the hours you put in each day and the research you do on the competition.
It is absolutely crucial that you find a way to learn about the challenges that businesses will face in the months to come, and that you learn how to use the skills and attributes that you already have in order to become the kind of leader that your business leads. A leadership and change online certificate course will help you to unlock your potential, to educate you on the issues that continue to drive and disrupt business, and give you the tools to drive change and progress.
Are You Prepared For Threats To Your Business?
It doesn’t seem like we have been short on threats to our businesses since March 2020. In fact, quite the opposite. It has been a battle simply to get to the end of each month as we scrambled to keep up our relationships with our customers and clients in the face of a shrinking marketplace and ferocious competition. But one of the most insidious threats that we have seen emerge during the pandemic has been the rise of cybercrime. Of course, we have always taken steps to protect ourselves from cybercrime attacks, but it has become increasingly obvious that what we thought was good enough absolutely wasn’t.
It has seemed as though every passing week has brought a new story about a ransomware attack or a new scam that is threatening finances or personal information. If you want to make sure that you don’t fall prey to the kind of attack that will play havoc with your productivity, you need to make sure that you have a solid security system in place. Bringing in a professional IT security expert is an investment worth making. They will highlight the vulnerabilities in your set-up, where potential attacks could come from and how you can prevent them. It is also well worth putting in the time to educate your team on these issues, especially if you are still working remotely and using cloud tech.