Business Communication in a Time of Coronavirus

people-matrix

 

The Coronavirus is impacting the world markets, economic wealth, travel, businesses and the way we go about life; and is likely to continue to have an impact to differing degrees for many weeks, months and years. As often said, life will never be the same again, but equally, we will emerge from this crisis. An important learning is the value and need for brotherhood and good neighbourliness.

What I think is of paramount importance during these times of VUCA, (to me this acronym is an uncomfortable-looking and sounding “word” – it stands for uncomfortable things too – Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity), is that we maintain communication with our staff and colleagues and provide the reassurance that they need – Communicate across, down and up to keep up their spirits and let them share their worries.

These are the key points that I have addressed with my own teams:

1. Context

With so much scaremongering in the media, it’s important to access trusted resources, typically government, national health services and trusted service provider sites for up to date information.

2. Explain your business continuity plan

How are you as an organisation planning to ride the stormy waters? What can your staff expect from you and what do you expect of them? If the news is “bad” share quickly to allow them to plan. In many circumstances, companies will not be able to access certain offerings and therefore staff may be impacted differently by opportunities offered to the company or themselves directly.

3. Address people’s fears

Lead from the front, whilst remaining supportive. No one expects you to have all the answers but demonstrate that the lines of communication are open. Listen to questions and find the answers and share it widely as others will have the same questions. Your mindset is infectious, therefore a positive mindset from the leadership makes life easier for yourself, as well as others, supporting clear thinking and lowered stress levels.

4. Communication

Use online collaboration tools to aid communication and repeat frequently on various forums as people cannot take in everything at once and will absorb more effectively through their choice of mediums, so use more than one communication channel.

World economies and our customers are going to feel the strain, and therefore by default, it will affect our own businesses by either business projects being put on hold, a slowdown in trade, reluctance to make decisions, non-payments, cashflow squeeze or reduced appetite to be creative in difficult times.

My focus as a plural entrepreneur is that we will get through this phase #strongertogether with creative thought engineering being deployed to deliver business growth as an outcome.

 

By |2020-04-06T10:38:01+01:00April 1st, 2020|Best practice, Communication, Company|Comments Off on Business Communication in a Time of Coronavirus

Day two of the ICSA Annual Conference 2019.

 

 

 

Day two of the ICSA Annual Conference 2019.

Yesterday was a productive day of networking and meetings at our stand.

This afternoon Sharon Constançon will be participating in a session, “How to identify toxic behaviour in the boardroom”, exploring how antagonism, unproductivity and disengagement are some of the behaviours that can undermine even the most experienced and enthusiastic boards.

Don’t forget if you are attending, drop by our stand and say hello.

By |2019-08-01T12:31:36+01:00July 10th, 2019|News & Events|0 Comments

How does a chairman in conjunction with the company secretary assess who best to evaluate the Board?

How does a chairman in conjunction with the company secretary assess who best to evaluate the Board?

An option is via the procurement process rather than via the Chair or Company Secretary, usually by tender, where there is no contact and a rigid system/process which requires everyone to mould themselves into. This is usually geared towards low price being a key factor.

Another method requires a proposal to be submitted to the Company Secretary or the Chairman direct, they shortlist and hold meetings in person with about three candidates.

The third option falls in-between options one and two, where there is no face to face meeting and the decision is made from the submitted proposal, usually by a panel of people.

We question whether companies end up with the best result is they have not assessed the personality and technical match by having worked through the paper-only process?

The most beneficial option must be the second one described, where the Chairman has the opportunity to meet and ensure a match between the company and evaluator is assured. Both the Board and evaluator need to work together as a team to deliver optimal outcomes, which are then owned by the Board in order that improvements can be achieved.

By |2019-09-11T13:18:15+01:00June 12th, 2019|News & Events|0 Comments

Devonshire House Panel Debate – 25 June 2019 – Should NEDs stop things going wrong?

Should NEDs stop things going wrong?

This is the subject of the Devonshire House Panel Debate on Corporate Governance to be held on Tuesday 25 June 2019.

Sharon Constançon of Genius Boards will be chairing the debate, which is hosted by Pinsent Masons at their Earl Street offices.

We will be examining from an external perspective how Boards act and react to external impacts, internal surprises, difficult topics, people agendas – typically issues that the Board cannot influence occurring in the way they do. “We never saw that coming!”  – should never need to be said.

Do, please join us if you can for what we hope will be a robust and interactive debate.

By |2019-08-01T12:32:16+01:00June 1st, 2019|News & Events|0 Comments

Africa as a growth continent

Many international businesses are showing an interest in Africa, as a business opportunity to grow their markets, business and bottom line.

Coming off a low business maturity base Africa offers high risk but high returns.

Not always easy, not always win, but has a direct influence on the investee countries when it works well.

Although Chinese and Indian businesses have long recognised the opportunities present, the U.K. has been very late to the African party and only recently considering joint economic initiatives with countries that have the relationships but not the wisdom, experience, legal systems, transparency and ethics that the UK can offer and partner with risk appetite and funding.

How should UK businesses enter the various markets of Africa to protect their risks where feasible but be open to good business opportunities?

By |2019-09-11T13:19:15+01:00May 27th, 2019|News & Events|0 Comments

Brexit delays making money work

Many British organisations appear to be handcuffed by Brexit.

Many consultancy styled businesses are finding two things: – How to earn a fortune to tell a company there is still not clarity – but they have at least spent the money “preparing for Brexit”.

Many other firms are finding that companies are bringing such services in house, so they are seen to be very engaged and busy therefore protecting themselves from redundancy.

How can these two fears be addressed to prevent wasting money or death by inertia? The investment market indicates that many companies are holding big decisions until after Brexit even though Brexit has been “kicked down the street”.

The lack of making money work is costing the economy dearly and impacting currency volatility generally narrowing the range of currency movements, with a total apathy being prevalent.

Uncertainty can create the volatility seen in the past week as bad news around the Brexit next steps pervade. Avoiding trading or making decisions is often not good governance. Management needs to recognise that they are accountable for both decisions and non-decisions.

However, when the economy is reinvigorated, money is likely to be invested quickly, bringing with it a different set of challenges…

By |2019-08-01T12:32:52+01:00May 25th, 2019|News & Events|0 Comments

“Asleep at The Wheel? What is the role of a NED regarding board effectiveness”

Sharon Constançon will be speaking at the CISI Corporate Finance Forum on 24 April.

“Asleep at The Wheel? What is the role of a NED regarding board effectiveness” will look at case studies where board effectiveness has been beneficial to a business, but also where the opposite has been the case as well as considering other areas relating to board effectiveness that NEDs need to consider.

By |2019-08-01T12:41:39+01:00April 15th, 2019|Uncategorized|Comments Off on “Asleep at The Wheel? What is the role of a NED regarding board effectiveness”
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