In the unprecedented times we find ourselves in, Business needs help wherever it can get it.
Sport, with its competitive edge, technical challenges and strategic approach can provide a valuable lesson for our economic recovery and ultimate survival.
Rugby – Maverick v Steady Eddie
In Rugby, those players with flair have always been considered a rare and precious commodity, capable of brilliance that can change a game in favour of their team. ‘Maverick’ ‘Genius’ ‘Magician’ are all superlatives used to describe these players, who excel in playing what is in front of them. This less planned approach does not always succeed and sometimes the gamble fails and costs the team points, or even the match.
On the flip side we have seen players who are able to accurately play to a pattern and thereby stick to a rigid Game Plan, playing to their own teams’ strengths and exploiting weakness in the opposition. ‘Steady Eddie’ ‘Safe pair of hands’ or simply ‘Solid’ is used to describe these players. This percentage approach is safer and statistically more likely to lead to success but being less flexible means it cannot often be changed quickly enough to rescue the team from defeat when the game is not going to plan.
Key Lessons for Business
So what has this got to do with Business you may ask?
Many businesses are being forced to look at their structures and overheads, with the current climate generating uncertainty about the future and a sharp focus on costs and survival. Redundancies are becoming the norm and businesses are focussing on the immediate post lockdown trading climate. So how many businesses have got a game plan, to cover the next 12 to 18 months and beyond? Any restructure needs to be thoroughly thought through, balancing future requirements with the need to control costs and maintain an engaged workforce.
The short-term thinkers may be gambling on parring down costs and hoping they retain enough resources to pick up what business is left. The route-A approach will always have its supporters, providing a logical justification for difficult emotional decisions. This short-term thinking needs to be sense checked and given context against longer term objectives, maintaining momentum and morale.
In truth, every business needs a Game Plan to provide a roadmap for the next 12 to 18 months and beyond. Providing checks and waypoints to assess progress should be part of the business DNA. Successful businesses need a ‘Maverick’ to exploit short term opportunities and provide a flexible response to changing market conditions and also need their ‘Steady Eddie’ to ensure they look ahead, understand where they are in the market and don’t forget their Game Plan.
It is not the strongest that will survive, but those who adapt best to our changing world.
Here to help
In the end it is up to each business to decide the best structure to allow it to survive and thrive. Where this involves restructuring and a redundancy programme, independent advice can take pain out of the process.
We’re HR specialists. We understand the challenges of developing the optimum structure for businesses. We’d love to hear from you.
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