Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Architect Your Company for Agility and Recovery

What does the corporate world look like, during the pandemic, and beyond? Well, you are in it now.

As international management consultants, this is what we see now, and predict later: better-managed desk space, right-sizing, restructured workweeks; and a talent age gap as many seasoned executives, and the career devoted, decide to retire.

Does remote work get the job done? A question, faced by the world in which global business sustains. The right formula for pandemic recovery is a sweet spot that keeps people engaged but allows some freedom as they work from remote locations.

At first, organizations barely survived; and then, with remote settings, people emerged vibrant and vocal, stepping up to the challenge.

Now, agility is one of the most important pillars of business success to move an organization toward complete, pandemic recovery.

A corporate structure reflects an internal resource that is used to integrate knowledge, creating a competitive advantage. Leaders led the way while followers felt as if they gained wings, learned to fly, and became much more gregarious during meetings. A new definition of decentralized structures adorned the pandemic like a hawk eying its next prey. Agile organizations found ways to facilitate the exchange of ideas and implement more innovative solutions based on decentralized decision-making.

Leaders inspired and transformed aggregate human capital into social capital so to implement the required changes in order to create better solutions to solve the plethora of problems that the pandemic brought about.

At first, organizations barely survived; and then, with remote settings, people emerged vibrant and vocal, stepping up to the challenge. The highly formalized structures that remained more bureaucratic, and, in fact, were noted by executives themselves as being somewhat negative, limited the contribution of effectiveness of leadership in our changing environment. Thus, the decentralized structures throughout the pandemic improved interactions, and created more knowledge in organizations based on agility.

Delegation became a concern, since the executives had the same space as other workers in the meeting frames. Respect for authority figures held the barriers in place while communication had a level playing field. Leaders, knowing that delegation of decision-making power could create a climate that in turn develops inter-departmental communication within organizations, empowered people to rise to the occasion through giving them a voice in meetings.

Executives turned over responsibility by delegating more to their subordinates and watched them not only survive but also thrive. Thus, decentralization encourages organizational communications and develops a climate of openness for employees to exchange new ideas.

Agile organizations found ways to facilitate the exchange of ideas and implement more innovative solutions based on decentralized decision-making.

In the remote setting, this has been done via email communication, instant messenger, and text. Pre-meeting and post-meeting communication has been enhanced with technology. As information and clarification are disseminated, employees can implement ideas through delegated authority of decision-making at the department level and to the lowest organizational level possible, while keeping the execution viable and timely. The agile organizations that survive, are ones that see executives push decision-making down the organizational chart, resulting in a pandemic recovery.

 

Mostafa SayyadiMostafa Sayyadi works with senior business leaders to effectively develop innovation in companies, and helps companies—from start-ups to the Fortune 100—succeed by improving the effectiveness of their leaders. He is a business book author and a long-time contributor to business publications and his work has been featured in top-flight business publications.

Michael J. ProviteraMichael J. Provitera is an associate professor, and an author of the book titled “Mastering Self-Motivation” published by Business Expert Press. He is quoted frequently in the national media.

How to Influence Organizational Change, Today

You, as a leader — more than ever — can consider today how Internet-type communications affects business.

The following important questions can help guide your efforts:

  • How much knowledge do you have of Internet-type communication?
  • Do you realize that there is a certain amount of fear surrounding tenuous relationships, saying or doing something wrong while in meetings?

It is important that you expand, review, and extrapolate your values, assumptions, beliefs, and expectations if necessary.

  • How can you control some of your habits that may hinder your performance as you communicate online?
  • Do you have the necessary courage to present, and feel comfortable doing so? If so, what is your fear-factor and how can you overcome it?

Now, write down the answers to these questions. And find ways to encourage more social capital prowess when communicating online.

Social Capital can be defined as, influencing career success and executive compensation, helping workers find jobs, and providing a richer pool of recruits for firms, facilitating intellectual capital, and a reduction in turnover rates.

Write down how you show courage.

The following questions can also help guide your efforts:

  • Do you ever find yourself feeling courageous at work or in your personal life but the fear-factor holds you back? How do you handle that? Do you give up? Do you persevere?
  • How does fear feel realistic? How do you feel, for example, in the middle of a pandemic, like the coronavirus pandemic of 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022?
  • Do you or did you feel stuck in the moment during this crisis? If so, why? If so, why not?

Then, list the next steps that you will take to develop the necessary courage to embrace social capital.

Write down how you show courage. Think of how fearless or fearful you are. Do you respect your own fear? Do you attempt to master your awareness of fear? Do you act despite some level of fear being present? Think about and write down how you will address your own personal fear.

Now list how you will address the following:

  1. Career success
  2. Seek out mentors and recruit new people that are positive influencers
  3. Build intellectual capital
  4. Reduce the threat of turnover rates at work by being present and caring about others

Next, read the article published by the Harvard Business Review titled “Leaders as Decision Architects,” written by John Beshears and Francesca Gino (May 2015). After reading the article in its entirety, answer the following questions by writing your answer to the change steps:

  • Step 1: How can you better understand how decisions are made at your organization?
  • Step 2: Take some time to define the problem.
  • Step 3: Diagnose the underlying causes and write them down.
  • Step 4: Take some time to design the solution and write it down.
  • Step 5: Test the solution. Write down what happened, what may happen, possible obstacles, bureaucratic roadblocks, etc.
  • Step 6: Redesign the solution until you have it right and you become a Social Architect!

Also, read this article, “Build Your Resilience in the Face of Crisis,” in the Harvard Business Review by Rasmus Hougaard, Jacqueline Carter, and Moses Mohan (March, 2020). And write down your answers to the following questions:

  • Are you connecting with others through compassion?
  • Whom can you help to have a better day?

By finding people to bond with, we can find solace and comfort in ourselves and bring smiles to faces. Write down whom you can connect with, and when you will reach out to them.

Finally, take time for mindfulness, meditation, and relaxation.

 

Mostafa SayyadiMostafa Sayyadi works with senior business leaders to effectively develop innovation in companies, and helps companies—from start-ups to the Fortune 100—succeed by improving the effectiveness of their leaders. He is a business book author and a long-time contributor to business publications and his work has been featured in top-flight business publications.

Michael J. ProviteraMichael J. Provitera is an associate professor, and an author of the book titled “Mastering Self-Motivation” published by Business Expert Press. He is quoted frequently in the national media.

Pandemic Recovery Recipe for Success

The Pandemic Recovery calls for Adaptive Leadership.

If you haven’t started already, you can start taking the steps that help you to become a successful and adaptive leader in order to achieve your plans and goals as you recover from the pandemic crisis.

First, take care of yourself for your loved ones, and make the right decisions for your followers — this is your dent in the universe, use it wisely. May this advice be a segue to keep reading, keep learning, and keep on “keeping on!”

Identify what makes you an effective, and adaptive leader.

In 1994, adaptive leadership theory emerged out of Ron Heifetz’s book, Leadership without Easy Answers. We suggest that you also read, “Adaptive Leadership for Our Time,” by Angel Acosta. Then, write down your answers to the following critical question:

  • How can we protect Leadership Voices from Below, since people have apprehensions, concerns, and questions that need quick answers?

Are you and your followers feeling better about themselves?

After answering this critical question and identifying what makes you an effective, adaptive leader, find how you see your leadership. If you are not adaptive, you may be effective, but how do you or your followers feel? If you are adaptive, are you and your followers feeling better about themselves?

As you begin to recognize your adaptive leadership strengths, consider how you feel about your status on the job, and in the office. Then, do more of the following things to ensure that you are more of an adaptive leader, both on the job and in the office. Write down your understanding of your own leadership style as it applies to adaptive leadership. Write down what you do to enhance your success as an adaptive leader.

Next, take some time to combine your knowledge of adaptive leadership with new business models:

  • How have you reacted to the pandemic? What can you do better?
    • Write your answers
  • What is your plan for developing hybrid workplace models?
    • Write it down
  • How can technology enhance your organization’s capabilities as you prepare for designing hybrid workplace models and the pandemic recovery?
    • Write your answers

Finally, once you have identified what you need to do to become a more successful, adaptive leader, you need to find your possible obstacles.

So, write down these possible obstacles that are most important for you right now in your career success as an adaptive leader.

In this stage, we also suggest that you read the article in the Harvard Business Review, “Career Advice from Wildly Successful People,” by Amantha Imber, published on June 30, 2021.

Here, you can continue to find the best solutions for the possible obstacles in your career success.

Write down your understanding of your own leadership style as it applies to adaptive leadership. Write down what you do to enhance your success as an adaptive leader.

 Mostafa SayyadiMostafa Sayyadi works with senior business leaders to effectively develop innovation in companies, and helps companies—from start-ups to the Fortune 100—succeed by improving the effectiveness of their leaders. He is a business book author and a long-time contributor to business publications and his work has been featured in top-flight business publications.

 

Michael ProviteraMichael J. Provitera is an associate professor, and an author of the book titled “Mastering Self-Motivation” published by Business Expert Press. He is quoted frequently in the national media.