Soon, COVID-19 will be over, and we will return to work in ways that we did before this global pandemic. We don’t know how much damage it will create or precisely when it ends. But it will end. We must prepare ourselves and our teams for the great return to the office.
Our post-epidemic future will be more flexible, virtual, and concerned with safety. Leaders will need to develop how to keep remote teams high performing, engaged, and healthy. Employees will need to strengthen networks, reskill, and remain fluent with evolving technology.
Update your marketing
Now is the time to update your marketing. An antiquated website is a red flag. It sends the message that the company does not keep up to date. Would you go to a doctor who advertised he is still using leeches? Your marketing must show that you keep up to date in your chosen profession.
Update your social platforms, bios, profile pictures, and your website.
Perform in-depth market analysis
Use this time to become an expert in your field to show how you are different from the rest of your competitors. Perform a competitive analysis about who you’re up against.
Make plans and communicate future remote work policies
Your team is wondering when they will return to the office and how it will be permanently changed. Remove the ambiguity and address the issue now, so there are no questions and no uncertainties about the company’s future work culture. The last thing anyone needs now is more guesswork.
Surveys illustrate that 75% of remote workers want their employer to provide the flexibility of work location after COVID-19 ends. Work articles’ future reflects this reality, with almost all assuming that where we work and what our offices look like will change.
Since most teams will have at least a few virtual members, it is time to determine how to keep your virtual teams high performing and engaged.
Show where you will allocate resources
Define your priorities and the focus of the company after the pandemic. The group is questioning how the team’s priorities will shift. Maybe marketing will play a central role, doubling down on the product or a new financing round.
Cultivate some key relationships now that you can leverage later on
People are more accessible than they were before the pandemic. We are all searching for more connection with other people. Now is the time to contact people in your industry that can help propel your company forward.
What should we do in the meantime?
Our pre-pandemic office environment was orderly. That certainty makes our brains feel comfortable. Now, circumstances range from chaos to complexity. Focus on getting your team comfortable with complexity.
Get clear about where you want to be in 10 years, then be flexible about the path you take to get there. Developing the capacity to think ten years ahead is a muscle. One way to start is to think about your personal life rather than your business. Imagine your life ten years from now, then work backward. You can be clear about where you want to be, even while you’re uncertain about the path to get there. Thinking about the long-term future gives your brain a break. It reminds you that the pandemic will eventually end and creates a sense of hope and energy about your future outcome.
Remember, this is not the first crisis
You’ve faced other difficult times, and so has your team. Ask your colleagues this question: When we’ve endured challenging tests in the past, what empowered us to survive? What was it about the leaders? About our clients and team members? About the organization and our products or services?
This question will surface organizational and individual strengths you may have forgotten exist. Record those resources, abilities, values, and perspectives that made you prosperous in the past, then ask: How can we create these in our current context?
Every company has pivoted during this pandemic, illustrating the constant resilience of entrepreneurs. Ultimately, good times are ahead for those who prepare for how the world will be permanently changed after the pandemic is over.