Innovation During Chaos

If something the COVID-19 has brought front and center is the need to operate our businesses under unusual circumstances efficiently, and effectively.  We have faced the need to get creative like never before.  Although it may feel that the rug has been pulled out from under our feet, it is time that we see beyond the current situation and look at the bigger picture.

Thinking about it, we now have the unique opportunity to take a thorough look at our businesses, identify the areas that need improvement, identify ways in which you can take your offerings to the virtual environment, and possibly come up with new offerings altogether.  I do not know about you, but in my case, I choose to see this situation as a very well needed pause to re-strategize (once again) my targets.

One thing that helps kick off this assessment is to go back to your purpose. The following questions help: Why you do what you do? Why are you in business? Why you offer the best value? Why should decision-makers choose you?

Through this process, it is important to be aware of your motivations. For example: making lots of money should not be your main goal.  It is an outcome of doing what you love, but it can’t be the main goal.  Having a passion-driven business allows you to feel empowered when the profit is not there.

Next, evaluate how you deliver your business outcomes, preferably thinking about it from the customer’s point of view. If you are feeling creative, map out the full customer journey. Consider the teams and functions needed and how they come together and cross-collaborate to improve the value of the outcomes. Make sure to include existing workflows, approvals, and systems that enable the teams to deliver optimal outcomes. Are there redundancies? Do you need all the checkpoints that you currently have? Where can you simplify? Where can you break silos?  Is this process all in your head or is the team fully aware? This exercise will help you define a process that is equally fitting to your business, as well as to your customer’s expectations. 

Finally, take a look at the people that will make the process happen.  It is important to improve the existing description of the roles and responsibilities, taking into consideration the skill set required to perform each particular role.  Your goal is to enable each team member to perform to the best of their ability, avoid effort duplication, and ensure there is clarity on where each of the defined responsibilities begins and where they end.

Through this exercise, you will strengthen your process, which enables you to build credibility and brand recognition in the market.  These two elements are the basis of your journey to achieve a strategic advantage.

About the Author:

Neysha Arcelay, our Business Transformation Partner, is the founder of Precixa, a Pittsburgh-based boutique consulting firm that specializes in designing and delivering transformative organizational strategies. Precixa helps businesses by optimizing business strategy, organizational structure, and day-to-day operations.  Neysha’s goal is to steer organizations clear of cookie-cutter solutions and provide custom recommendations based on the unique landscape of each client. The past few decades have given her a front-row seat to strategies that work. As the author of The Little Blue Book: A girl’s guide to owning your professional development, Neysha’s commitment to inclusion and women empowerment makes her an active community leader. Whether through her book or volunteer work, she continuously works to elevate talent partnering with various like-minded organizations.