How Your Company Can Beat the Post-Pandemic Odds

There is no doubt leaders are going to have to pivot for their companies to emerge stronger from the pandemic. It’s something that we at The River Group have thought a lot about. In our recent white paper, “Emerging Stronger: Can Your Company Beat the Odds?” we delved deeply into what it will take for a company to succeed post-pandemic.

One thing is for certain, a virtual/hybrid workforce is not going away.

Our co-founder and President, Peter Thies, PhD advises: “There’s almost no choice but to adopt a hybrid workforce. Everyone has had a crash course in remote work so the resistance is lower and companies have recognized the benefits of it — including the convenience, the cost savings in office space and the access to a much wider pool of talent.”

Still the statistics are daunting. Studies of market disruption suggest only 10 to 14 percent of companies will emerge stronger from the COVID-19 crisis.

Which companies will prevail?

To come out ahead, there is no mystery about what needs to change.

Thies, who has spent 25 years counseling leaders at global companies in making strategic organization changes, says, “It’s still the four levers of strategy, organization, talent and leadership. What’s different is how CEOs will capitalize on the momentum to change.”

Certainly, leaders must inspire others to achieve a different set of objectives — while also defining, and promoting, their “why.”

Where to start?

Ask post-pandemic relevant questions to determine your organization’s readiness to meet the challenges and uncertainties of the “next normal.”

And then don’t stop there.

Posing the right questions is the first step — then you have to make the appropriate strategic organization changes. As with any transformation, emerging stronger requires a specific, integrated and coordinated plan.

The Emerging Stronger Dashboard

Keep it simple. We recommend mapping out your plan in a one-page dashboard — to best keep track of all of your priorities and progress.

Here are four “musts” to laser-focus on:

  • Recalibrating Strategy. Employees want to be part of a winning, forward-thinking organization rooted in the marketplace’s realities.
  • Reshaping the Organization. Accelerate digital transformations in customer-, consumer-, and strategic-partner relationships to drive real growth.
  • Activating Talent. Reinvent the employee experience to empower teams in a collaborative environment using a variety of platforms and media.
  • Demonstrating Resilient Leadership. Heighten your self-awareness and focus on self-care and the emotional, mental and physical well-being for leaders first then your teams.

Leadership Matters

During the last year, CEOs have been consumed with the here and now — the basic health and safety of employees, plans for reestablishing operations and quickly retooling in some cases.

Winning in the “next normal” will require a drastically altered game plan. But one thing will remain constant. Why some companies will thrive boils down to leadership every single time.

Post-pandemic, leaders have to seize the opportunity to truly rethink how they lead. They need to stay at their personal best while simultaneously helping others do the same. We are seeing certain leadership characteristics rising to the top of the list — compassion, accessibility and building up others’ energy. Now is the time to communicate authentically in a more transparent and genuine way.

Undoubtedly, there were a lot of lessons learned during the pandemic. It’s important we heed them and build upon them to truly be successful.


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The New Normal of Leadership: Connecting Others in a Disconnected World