The Big Picture: CEOs on what they've learned after a year of COVID-19
How has the pandemic affected your industry? We asked CEOs in a variety of fields about how their leadership has changed after facing extraordinary challenges over the past 12 months. Each offers three hard-won pieces of advice.
To mark one year since the World Health Organization officially declared COVID-19 a pandemic, we asked CEOs in various industries about their greatest challenges and what they have learned in these extraordinary 12 months.
The hard-learned lessons can serve as an inspiration for other leaders. Here are three action items from each leader after a full year battling the COVID-19 crisis.
CEO EMEA, Barceló Hotel Group
- Redefine your priorities. You may have to modify your objectives, KPIs and work groups, among other areas.
- Arm yourself with an objective and informed opinion about the current state of affairs and about possible future scenarios.
- Keep your organization calm and your teams motivated through constant communication that is proactive, sincere and empathetic.
President for the Americas Region, UPS
- Focus on your customers and their needs.
- Find new solutions and be creative. It's about innovation, focusing on the future.
- Take a few moments to say thanks to your team in a genuine way as they are working harder than ever.
CEO Institutional Clients Group, Citi
- Think about how digitalization is affecting your business model: Is it just accelerating things or is there a significant step-change in adoption that requires a more fundamental strategic response?
- Define where your new normal is and what it means for talent acquisition, training and flexibility for remote versus office-based work.
- Identify what the increased preference for disruptors in capital markets means for your business model and strategy: Do you collaborate with them? Do you simplify and focus on businesses that have a clearer, stronger competitive position?
CEO Spain, Ferrer
- Apply new AI technologies to the entire value chain, especially to R&D. That will reduce the time it takes to innovate and lower the rate of failure.
- Personalize the customer experience, backed up by data. That will improve your value proposition and benefit patients.
- Develop the talent you need to make your purpose a reality. Your team, the community and society-at-large will benefit.
|Pharmaceutical sales 2019-2020, in billions of euros
*Price ex manufacturer
Source: IQVIA MIDAS; IQVIA Global Market Insights
A version of this article is published in IESE Business School Insight 158.