Is it too early to draw lessons on corporate readiness and the effectiveness of organisational responses to the COVID-19 pandemic?
According to S-RM’s Head of Resilience Advisory, John White, “there is a big difference between lessons identified and lessons learned. With each day that passes we discover more about the near and long term impacts of Covid-19, and there are many more unknowns between where we are today and any return to the old, or a new normal.” He notes that few organisations were fully prepared for an event of this magnitude and that for many a culture of annual incentivisation and reporting of results meant that the management of lower frequency, less tangible risks was pushed into the future.
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For John, building resilience is about helping organisations “manage the influence of uncertainty, balancing their investments in controlling risk with their appetite for taking it.”
“Knowing what is in your own long-term best interests is often much easier than doing it; bridging this gap is the work my team does with our clients around the world.” With the world still every bit as risky as it was pre-Covid-19, John recommends organisations invest now in refreshing and further developing their scenario planning. “All of the things you were concerned with last year are still here; there is a real risk that if the underlying health and economic challenges posed by Covid-19 collide with another disaster your next crisis could become a catastrophe.”
“Crisis teams are tired, fatigued. They have been managing challenges in their lives out of work as much as in. Appetite for addressing other existential risks is low. Nevertheless, the likelihood and potential impact of these events remains unchanged.”
John says of S-RM’s Global Resilience Practice: ”We are working tirelessly with our clients to design engaging new ways of delivering scenario and exercise content remotely – reducing cost and resource drain, reflecting a new way of working and ultimately helping people interact with the content in a meaningful way; giving them the confidence they are ready for what comes next.”