The Governors of six states (NY, NJ, CT, PA, RI, and DE) outlined the beginning of a plan to come out of the states’ lockdowns. West Coast Governors are doing similar. Smart plans based on data will be the basis of what these thoughtful and effective leaders will do in the coming weeks and months. They serve as a model for what all companies should do.
Start with Strategy
Each company should assess their unique situation in order to develop a strategy that best meets their needs. Ideally, the corporate strategies would flow down to departmental strategies. What we’ve seen in previous times of upheaval is that parallel tracks are needed for collaboration and iteration in top-down and bottom-up strategic development.
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Define Your Strategy – Survival, Speed, Strength, or Agility
There are a limitless number of potential strategies. For the purpose of brevity, we’ll touch on four.
Survival Strategy – Live to Fight Another Battle
For many retailers, surviving the crisis is the only strategy that can be considered. Their primary goal for 2020 will be remaining solvent and in business for a more aggressive strategy in 2021. Key tactics include risk mitigation and cost reduction.
Speed Strategy – Capitalize on Near-Term Opportunity
For retailers with the opportunity and capability to meet clear demand, strategy should consider ways in which the company can get back into business most quickly and effectively. Key tactics include readying your workforce and prioritizing initiatives to ensure alignment.
Strength Strategy – Seize Opportunity
For retailers that recognize significant opportunity from pent up demand or severely weakened competitors, a strength strategy would set goals to come out of the crisis with the intent to build on competitive strengths. Focused investments in areas offering significant return on investment is a key tactic.
Agility Strategy – Be Ready for the Unknown
No one is sure when the economy will open up and how consumers will react, so many retailers won’t be able to confidently forecast demand. Supply chain may also be a big unknown. Uncertainty calls for a strategy that focuses on developing organization agility. Thoughtful investments to increase visibility and flexibility are key tactics.
Sophelle is working with leading retailers to help them come out of the COVID-19 crisis best prepared to succeed. Our strategy, selection, implementation, and optimization services cover the full lifecycle of retailers’ solution needs.
This is the first in a four-part series on how retailers can come out of the COVID-19 crisis best positioned to succeed in the future. Read Part 2 “Agility Is Oxygen” to learn more and subscribe to Sophelle’s newsletter for Parts 3 & 4.
Let Us Help
Sophelle has helped hundreds of leading retailers for 25 years. For more information and help through the COVID-19 crisis, please contact Sophelle today.