With the outbreak and rapid spreading of COVID-19, the entire world seems to have been turned on its axis as many industries are now forced into unfamiliar territory and left to either fight or flight in this seemingly post-apocalyptic era.
As companies grapple with the crippling effects and uncertainty of the new virus, it is also presenting us with a unique opportunity to help shape the business of the future.
The future of work is now
Suddenly – almost overnight – the business landscape has been challenged and is being digitally redeveloped. Multiple industries that weren’t already agile and fluid in some form, are now becoming unhinged. While this has been a while in the making, COVID-19 acted as a catalyst, as many businesses now have to physically close doors to limit the potential spreading of the virus.
Brands like Google and Facebook are expertly managing the shift as this culture is a norm, whereas more traditional companies and even some agencies had to take the leap unwillingly. At BRANDTRUTH//DGTL, a core principle is our agility and understanding that in the creative industry, rigid structures can often be destructive.
As quickly as digital trends change, so do the needs of our team. Agile thinking and the ability to make any space productive is what enables consistent transformation and exceptional creativity. Even agencies need to empower their teams with a fierce approach to being flexible.
Speed is key. In fact, this capability is our magic potion for working fast and efficiently, with precision and high quality. We try new things, fast. We fail fast. We learn fast. We decide fast. We implement fast. And our team embraces the speed of our culture.
Trust your team
We are building, attracting and enabling collaborative teams to drive a high performing company and culture. After all, a key competency in this shift of work-from-anywhere is the underlying need to unequivocally trust employees by enabling them to do so. By letting go of archaic systems and processes that require physical presence we have learned that an office can exist anywhere with the use of just your smartphone, a data connection, and clients that support this way of working too.
A ‘business as usual’ approach must be taken when new policies are introduced to allow flexibility and to ensure that client deliverables are met. It is key to provide virtual inspiration, daring leadership and precise guidance to staff, and highlight the need for effective communication. Human capital remains our greatest asset and is now more than ever, the most important element in brand longevity.
Tools of the trade
With much of our workforce working from home, we are using our current tools to create a virtual office space; all that is needed is an internet connection.
- There are various productivity and collaboration apps available for businesses. G Suite by Google is among the most cost-effective team tools to use for cloud computing, collaboration, and productivity. There are also great apps like Jamboard for co-creation brainstorms and Hangouts/Meets for messaging and video conferencing.
- A collection of the following productivity platforms can be used to deliver on key internal business functions, like Process St, LucidChart, Airtable, Smartsheet, Chase Software, Review Studio and Hi5.
With the outbreak being declared an International Disaster, not only is the future of businesses evolving but our general way of interaction. Whether (like us), you gamify your virtual team meetings, have fun with team role-playing activities or sharing funny home videos to boost morale.
Resilience, courage, agility and embracing change will establish you as pioneers of human and digital connection. And above all, it starts with the leadership embracing this digital culture.
Wayne Flemming is founder and managing director of BRANDTRUTH// DGTL
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