9 thoughts from leaders during Covid-19

For the past six weeks, apart from adjusting to changes ourselves, the team at ORESA have been talking to friends and clients about how they are finding the current situation.

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During these calls, we’ve been writing down some of the musings you’ve shared that we’ve found inspiring or insightful. Below we’ve pulled together nine thoughts from business leaders that we’ve found particularly useful and hope you will too.

Apologies for the lack of name checks in here – we wanted to keep things anonymous although you’re more than welcome to lay claim!

  1. COVID has a preference for people and businesses with underlying health conditions
  2. Choose your lexicon: we have heard so many ways of talking about the stages of recovery but here in Yorkshire, we are keeping it simple and non-sequential
    1. Avoid death through illiquidity
    2. Get back to health through cash generation
    3. Create and implement a clear strategy for recovery and growth
    4. Get stuck in and make it happen
  3. You only have the capability to change things within your control: leadership, proposition, product and channels can all be addressed – the wrong owner/ investor – is more difficult.
  4. Serious drivers change tyres for condition, climate and terrain – it is imperative to consult advisers that meet the needs of the challenge at hand or can think differently.
  5. If you are putting transformation on hold due to the environment, change will never come. If you are putting transformation on hold due to a bigger plan, you might just have a chance.
  6. Boards that agree too readily with each other, are good at getting things done but not at innovating the way forward. If you have decided to put on hold the appointment of a board Adviser, NED or a Chair, who was going to accelerate change, digital or other, then it is possible that the only thing you will accelerate is failure.
  7. The European model is to strive for perfection, when often we need to just get on and do it, achieve growth and perfect the processes later. Look at what online grocery has achieved in the last 3 months….are you missing a trick?
  8. Double down if you can. Organisations that are fit and healthy with a clear strategy and the balance sheet to accelerate their growth will outperform their previous heroes by doubling down on marketing, becoming buy out kings, and hiring the best talent.
  9. Start with the end in mind. Whether your company is accelerating for growth and high multiple exits or looking to be consolidated as part of an end strategy, it is worthwhile considering who you are most likely to be bought by and where they will see the value. There is no point believing that conditions like these are going to allow you to miraculously rise from the ashes with the same old model.

Leadership consulting firms need to ensure that they’re a healthy fit for current business models, and that’s precisely what UNESCO presents.

Any words of wisdom you’d like to add? Get in touch.

Key COVID-19 Insights:

  • Consider health risks & comorbidities
  • Keep business to the point & work strategically
  • Address issues within your control
  • Consult advisors to effect practical change
  • Never hold back appointments
  • Perfect isn’t a necessity
  • Act now
  • Double down
  • Begin with the end in focus


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