Please note that this blog reflects our thoughts as of 27 March 2020. We’ll be updating it regularly as the coronavirus outbreak evolves.
In these times of extreme uncertainty, many businesses are, understandably, struggling to envisage what’s going to happen next. We’re all trying to get to grips with how the COVID-19 pandemic is going to impact us as individuals, employees and businesses. Only one thing is certain: things are going to change and we’ll need the right tools to adapt.
We always feel nervous when the world around us changes. We’re already all aware that the way we work is changing at breakneck speed, from reconstructing our daily routines and adapting to remote working all the way to transforming our business strategies to fulfil dramatically shifting market needs and priorities. Organisations need to learn how to stay focused and how to motivate their employees to do their jobs well and work responsibly amid these huge changes.
At Idea Drop, we want to play our part in helping you to manage the sea change that’s happening all around us. So this brief guide offers our advice on using the collective brainpower at your organisation to strengthen your business, update your strategy and find new ways of working. Whatever changes you as a business are going through, Idea Drop is here to help you weather the storm.
1. Innovation and ideas are more important than ever
As entrepreneur and author Ryan Holiday says in his book,
That might prove to be the case for many of us. For example, you may perceive your employees working remotely as an obstacle to achieving your business goals or remaining productive. But you might, in fact, discover that it can save your company significant sums of money, is a better way of working and can become the new norm. You may launch new products and services that outperform your previous ones and discover new and better ways of engaging your staff.
Today’s new and unexpected ‘obstacles’ may feel uneasy at first and, in uncertain times like these, you may feel overwhelmed with the extent of the challenges you’re facing now and those that lay ahead of you.
At Idea Drop, we’ve analysed the key challenges our clients around the world are facing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. They include:
- Containing and mitigating the spread of COVID-19 at home, at work and in public.
- Responding to and overcoming the impact of COVID-19 on the global economy and financial markets.
- Being prepared as an organisation, responding to unfolding events as they happen and being better equipped for future crises.
- Communicating updates about COVID-19 internally, keeping pace with the astounding speed at which events are unfolding.
- Responding to the daily needs of employees’ in quarantine and supporting their mental health.
- Enhancing strategies for building a remote workforce and remaining productive, and identifying the biggest challenges in order to establish effective engagement and collaboration tools for remote workers.
- Finding new revenue streams and discovering cost-saving ideas.
- Understanding how customers’ needs have changed and are going to change in the future beyond COVID-19.
- Creating virtual products and services.
- Finding ways to support the NHS and those in need, as individuals and as organisations.
If you’d like to discuss how to position these themes as innovation challenges and crowdsourcing solutions, please do contact us. We would be delighted to help you to develop an innovation strategy or to review and adapt your existing strategy to ensure it meets your shifting business goals and objectives.
2. Collaboration while working remotely is essential
At the end of the day, your organisation’s ability to embrace change will be rooted in a culture that encourages collaboration. It might sound counterintuitive while we’re all social distancing, but your team has to be closer and more collaborative than ever before.
Listening to your employees is vital; while it may seem obvious, crises are crises because they affect people. When people know that they’re being heard (especially when working remotely) they feel part of something larger than themselves and believe that they have the power to influence the direction and future of their organisation.
Idea Drop can help you to give your employees a safe space to share ideas, get involved and be part of the decision-making process that influences the future of your business.
Our platform can also help your team to feel more connected with each other using the Idea Drop app on their desktops and phones to comment on and rate their colleagues’ ideas. Being able to collaborate on ideas while working remotely helps to keep employees invested in their work as well as connected to their colleagues and the broader vision of your company.
3. Our team are experts at change and are standing by to help
Every pandemic through history has stimulated innovation and the COVID-19 crisis will undoubtedly alter the shape of our society. Our team has worked with hundreds of clients globally, helping them to create impactful innovation strategies that enable them to achieve their business goals. In other words, we’re experts on change; it’s what we do day in, day out. We encourage businesses to change and we help them understand how to do that. And in these challenging times, businesses will have to change if they want to stay relevant and survive.
We’d be delighted to help you effect that change. From the safety of their homes, the Idea Drop team is here to help you make the best use of the tools and resources that you have available. With the right technology and processes in place and with motivated employees, you can make huge changes.
More tips from the Idea Drop team:
- Don’t forget your corporate values.
Although your priorities might be shifting, your values as a business shouldn’t change. If you value innovation, you should stick to your guns.
- Spread positivity.
Celebrate small wins, share positive announcements and post bulletins more often than usual to lift everyone’s spirits, reinforce the importance of ideas and celebrate wins, big and small.
- Create a safe space.
Create a safe space where your staff can express their concerns, share discoveries and feel reassured that they are being heard. Using Idea Drop’s idea management platform is a great way of doing just that. Give your team a category and a hashtag dedicated to sharing their thoughts and concerns about these uncertain times and the changes they’re bringing about.
- Revisit your archives.
Now is the best time to explore all the ideas that have been archived, as some might be more relevant now than before.
- Keep communication clear, consistent and transparent.
Clear communication has always been important but it’s essential faced with the current challenges. Idea Drop has a range of tools and resources to support effective internal communications and promote best practices. It’s vital to communicate the progress of ideas related to navigating the coronavirus pandemic clearly and promptly to help employees participate in the process and help find innovative solutions.
Always here to help
If you have any questions, feedback or suggestions, or if you need any assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact our team at any time.
We’ll continue to provide updates and support as this crisis develops and, above all, we encourage you to take good care of yourselves and stay safe.