Boardroom briefing: the future is now, using lockdown wisely and positive news from the COVID-19 front line


Has the COVID-19 crisis accelerated workplace change? How to use your lockdown wisely and New Zealand’s hard lockdown starting to show results. Readings from around the world on business, leadership and management.

COVID-19 crisis forces the future on businesses

It can be hard to see any good coming out of the current pandemic with headlines about death rates and infection spikes, but Entrepreneur Asia has looked at a small silver lining.

The website says that the world’s rush to embrace work-from-home tech and remote solutions may very well mean we have accelerated the rate of change in the workplace.

E-learning, video conferencing and remote engagement tech have been around for years but there has been a real resistance to working outside of the confines of the office.

If there is one small positive to be taken from the current problems it is just how fast we have adapted to our ‘new normal’.

Use your lockdown wisely

Shot of two colleagues video chatting with each other on a computer at work. Credit: Zoom

How can business leaders identify opportunities to innovate and stay focused when times are tough?

‘As business slows down, it’s a great time to hit all the tasks you always plan to do but never quite had the time to do,’ advise Sarah Kimmorley and Magnus Grimeland of global investment company, Antler.

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They also point out it’s a time to conserve capital, pivot to cash-generating activities where possible, and look closely at your existing products to see how they can be improved.

With travel off the agenda and online video conferencing the new normal, it may also be a time to be a little brave with your sales activity:

‘Globally, companies and decision-makers are being forced to make deals and do business over video conferencing; this is a great opportunity to reach customers everywhere and close deals faster from home with no travel costs. Similarly, some people who are usually out of reach may now have more time on their hands because they are at home. Try your luck and aim high.’

New Zealand’s handling of outbreak gets praise

Social distancing helps stop the spread of the disease. Credit: pixabay

With COVID-19 just beginning in PNG it can be instructive to look at the positive case of a near neighbour.

While Australia is beginning to get the virus under control, it appears that New Zealand is in an even better position, with The Guardian reporting that its strict lockdown measures have helped the country avoid exponential growth in infections.

New Zealand’s five million residents have been in total lockdown for two weeks, with people only being allowed to leave their homes for essentials, such as food and medical care, and exercise.

If a country moves quickly and decisively, results can begin to show quite quickly.

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