Last week, we hosted the first in our series of Firestarter Forums, where we aim to bring together a broad range of business owners and leaders to address the essential issues they are facing as they develop their lockdown exit strategies and successfully navigate re-entry into normal trading conditions, whatever that might look like in a post COVID-19 world.
During last week’s forum, we looked at the challenges of being the boss during lockdown; how leaders are adjusting to a different way of working, how bigger plans may have been put on hold, getting control back and finding a way back towards longer term strategic thinking.
As our brilliant guest speaker, Lisa Zevi from REAL Business Builders said, we are certainly living in interesting times and as the 42 people who attended the forum will confirm, business leaders are facing challenges that we probably never even contemplated before this crisis took hold. Nevertheless, one of the big themes that came out of the session is that we are a resolute bunch and are working really hard to address all the issues we are facing.
One of the really positive things to come out of the current crisis is our acceptance and use of new technology to maintain productivity, and this forum definitely maximised the potential of Zoom. The use of live polls, breakout rooms, split screens and professional graphics provided a truly professional delivery, all thanks to the expertise of our partners, Red Blaze.
In a survey completed after the session, participants provided some really constructive feedback, with 72% saying that this forum was better than other Zoom meetings they have attended and 73% claiming that the content was very relevant to their businesses.
Business leaders are feeling calm and focused
In fact, it was the polls that gave us the first enlightening moment of the session, with 80% of our participants saying that they are feeling calm, focused and are actually using this situation as an opportunity to review how they live their lives, with possibilities that they had never considered before.
Clearly, there are worries that all business leaders are facing right now, such as changing business models to survive this current period, managing employee wellbeing and effective leadership, diminishing business (and personal) finances and more. During the breakout session, all our participants shared ideas and best practice on the best ways to deal with these challenges, but a comforting fact that came out was that 77% of our audience had a plan before this crisis hit, and are either sticking to it or already have a new plan that they are executing.
77% of our audience had a plan before this crisis hit, and are either sticking to it or already have a new plan that they are executing.