March 26, 2020

Slingshotting Round The Sun

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Now is the time to innovate not shutdown says Ben Johnson, MD of BML Digital.

We’re all adapting to these challenging times, and having to adapt at pace. Many organisations are trying to hoard cash, but if you’re in either a cash-rich position or have a strong credit line, now is exactly the time to be spending on innovation and hardening internal processes.

What will your business look like on the other side of this?  You can either be scrabbling to get your staff back on side, repairing the damage to cash flow, rebuilding your supply chain or you could take the more aggressive approach of coming out with significant new products and ideas to support your customers as they come to terms with the long-term damage. Which supplier will they turn to, the one who is struggling to get back on its feet or the one that can offer them genuine solutions to their problems?

How quickly have you managed to get people working remotely? How quickly have you scaled your infrastructure? How quickly have your staff adapted to the new normal? You’ve just demonstrated you can move at much quicker pace than you ever thought possible.

Let’s harness that and strike while the iron’s hot - those innovation ideas that you hadn’t got round to can now have some focus, get built in weeks and be ready for market test as soon as the market comes back or even now if it solves a problem caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Plans are all well and good in the Summer, but in the Winter it’s wiser to simply have an objective*

As an example, we’ve been working with clients on chatbots using Salesforce’s Einstein. They’ve been successful, achieved their goals, all been lovely. Now, they’re needed to solve critical business challenges around Employee Relations, IT Support and Customer Engagement - and with the recognition that we should now just get things done rather than go through interminable governance, they’re going live in a matter of days.

We’re all heading towards the sun at the moment, are you going to crash into it or slingshot round it and come out fighting on the other side?

* Jack Logan, Early Riser, Jasper Fforde - not a business book….