What differentiates your business?

Marketing and market research tells us that there are generally 6 factors that differentiates your business from your competition:

Product, service, channels of distribution, relationships, reputation/image, and price.

Did these factors make any impact during COVID? Could you rely on any of these factors to take on the overnight changes in March 2020 when the world was told to stay home?

Since then, a decade’s worth of digital change happened in 6 months. All businesses had to implement the digital projects their teams have been working on for the last 10 years and could never get approval to implement. Nobody denies that the last year has radically changed the way organizations operate.

Before the pandemic, many companies were satisfied revisiting their learning strategy once a year — if that often. In 2020 their teams had to adjust overnight, and the way staff were trained, collaborate and interact in their teams had changed. They had to do that without any training, preparation, or notice. If anything, the shutdown crystalized the need for agility. Companies who started their journey on the Agile way of working were able to adjust and the rest struggled.

Please note that an Agile way of working is an attitude rather than a way of working or methodology.

All businesses have products, channels of distribution and certain pricing but what really differentiates businesses is the collective thinking of their people. This collective thinking is strengthened by reward systems, processes, and procedures. Over time this collective thinking of the people become the culture of the business. Changing this culture overnight is exceedingly difficult and stressful.

The world is about to go through another drastic change. How will the workplace look after lockdown? What will the post-pandemic organization look like? One thing is clear: things will not go back to the way they were. Though the number of remote workers will not stay as high as it is during the pandemic, it will not return to 2019 levels. A recent Brandon Hall Group COVID-19 survey found that more than one-third of companies expect half or more of their workforce to remain remote.

Are there ways you can prepare your staff for the changes to come and how can you improve agility and resilience in your organization in a short period of time?

People are what they think. They choose their thinking and their attitude, and they always have choices. Organizations shape their people’s thinking through their processes, procedures, and reward systems. Whole-Brain Thinking can support organizations to shape their peoples thinking into creativity and build agility and resilience. Rather than constantly focussing on what is wrong and not working. The benefit is a workforce that can adjust on short notice and come up with solutions to problems with less stress and drama. Whole-Brain Thinking explains that all people have a predominant brain quadrant or quadrants that determine the way people communicate and like to communicate.

When people understand that different people think with different quadrants of the brain, they begin to understand why people react differently. This enables them to realise they can have good relationships with anybody if they understand where others are coming from, and they can move from tolerating people who are different from them to understanding and valuing them.

For example, Whole-Brain Thinking support sales staff to become their customer for the time they are dealing with them. Whole-brain thinking is the skill of talking the language of the listener. If you move into the other person’s “space” and talk their language, you can manage people, sell to them or even parent your child in the language they understand.

What really differentiates your business from your competition is the way your people think, how you reward them and how often you allow them to change their processes and procedures. In other words, whether the organization builds its agility and resilience or do they rule through fear by creating volatility, uncertainty, ambiguity and complexity?

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