Resources for a world in crisis

The world is in turmoil. We see much information currently about how to deal with the COVID-19 situation, on all levels.

Focussing on the fields of business & leadership, I wanted to provide key resources that I think are relevant in this time. It is a mix of my own writings and external links on crisis leadership. Some of it is “Pre-Corona” material with still relevant lessons for today’s situation. This list will be contantly updated as the situation evolves.

Let me know if you want to connect on any of these more in-depth for you or your teams.

How to lead your business in times of crisis

A Fast Company article on How to lead your company in crisis, to which I contributed some lessones learned from 2008. (Pre-Corona)

An article in CFO magazine on “Are you ready for a recession?“. This has some strategies in it and is also Pre-Corona. However, the lesson is clear – take measures to prepare your company and organization.

How to engage & motivate a remote team & how to work remotely

This situation is giving the remote working world a full renewed focus. Here are a couple of best practice overviews that I have used and written about in the past:

My 2011 TEDx talk on Engaging Virtual Presentations. The engagement strategies are still valid, especially #4 and #5 – use the Whiteboard functionalities to the max, and co-create as much as possible. (Obviously Pre-Corona)

As we better get used to virtual work, here are 6 metrics that every virtual leader should work on. (Pre-Corona)

Now that we work longer in the virtual world, we have to engage and connect differently. Here are some reminders on How to be successful in a remote world. (Pre-Corona)

Here an article on inviting audience interaction, a vital factor for virtual meetings. These tools can also be perfectly integrated into for instance Zoom. (Pre-Corona)

How to think & strategize in times of crisis

The key task of a leader is to provide a way forward in a crisis. There is nothing worse than giving up or running around like a headless chicken. Here are some approaches that can help you:

It is vital to have a very quick approach to strategy creation these days. Many strategy processes are not made for this. Here is an article in the AMA Journal on my approach with regards to Rapid Strategy Creation. (Pre-Corona)

How to communicate in times of crisis

As a subset of crisis leadership, communication is a key task of a leader in these situations. In a nutshell, be clear, communicate often, admit that you don’t know and address also the personal side.

Being able to clearly communicate the way ahead is also crucial. Some of the tools mentioned in this post on Great and Clear Strategy Communication can help. (Pre-Corona)

The geopolitical and strategic outlook in a Post-Corona world

If you have studied the mental models and scenarios, there are of course different potential outcomes possible, from a quick dip towards system change.

McKinsey’s business outlook is valuable information.

Prepare for a different world, key message of this FT article.

The world may not be the same, but maybe it can be better, as outlined in this Singularity University article.

My recommendation – think & prepare for these different and hypothetical scenarios now.

Social Media & News

Of course, you should follow offical sources as much as possible. However, I it is extremely useful to go a bit deeper. I highly, highly recommend to use Twitter for updates.

I have found that a well-curated Twitter feed is one of the most powerful tools to stay ahead. Here are some people that I recommend to follow to stay ahead and shape your thinking. I will add more, contact me if you want to have a full list of people I recommend to follow and listen to.

Nassim Taleb His style is unusual, his content is valuable. He is one of the few who can say “I told you so” and prove it. He coined the term Black Swan and taught us about anti-fragility. I highly recommend following him also in this situation.

Balji Srinivasan One of the foremost thinkers in my view on the overall situation. My experience: What you read here you will see two weeks later in the news.

Naval Ravikant, a venture capitallist and one of the most interesting people to follow omn Twitter in general, and certainly in this time.

How to experiment in times of crisis

This crisis will need us all to try out new things. As many of you know I have spoken and written quite a lot about experimentation. The Spaghetti Principle of Innovation will come in handy these days as a mindset and mental model.

Watch the TEDx talk on the Spaghetti Principle of Innovation and Experimentation.

Here is an overview where you can get your personal copy of Innovation that Sticks.

How to lead yourself in times of crisis

It is absolutely vital not to neglect yourself in this time. How you lead yourself. A lot of habits are built over years, however, there is a lot you can do right now to lead yourself.

My TEDx talk on Self-Leadership: Great leadership starts with Self-leadership. I fundamentally believe this is ever more so true in a crisis situation. Self-Awareness, Self-Control and Self-Regulation are key for leaders and everyone to stay calm.

Stoic philosophy is for me the go-to operating system, especially in times of crisis. Read this book and essentially everything from Ryan Holiday on this subject. Subscribe to The Daily Stoic. Get into Stoic Philosophy now. This is the time to practice it.

From a bit of a different angle I can recommend to follow Wim Demeere. Wim is a an expert in self-protection and societal analysis in various fields, including martial arts but also social dynamics. While you are there, become a Patreon of Wim to get inside advice. Wim shares thoughts & ideas from worlds that many people never encounter, but that we are all facing now.

Lastly, humor & laughter is necessary even in the deepest crisis. I recommend to follow Tank Sinatra and his Instagram channel and daily memes. Always to the point & hilarious.