SAILING THROUGH THE PANDEMIC – AN EXPERIENCE OF A BUSINESS HEAD

The world came to a standstill. Abruptly. Without any warning.

Himadri Hans Handloom is an Integrated Weaving Unit located in the foothills of Himalayas in the small town called Almora in Uttarakhand, India. Run by a social organisation, it is a livelihood program that provides livelihood opportunity to almost 200 rural women coming from across 12 neighbouring villages. And the only providence to employment in the region.

As a COO who had taken over the unit just a few days back, it was quite a challenge to restart the operation in the middle of a complete lockdown. Amidst fears of all kinds, getting the workforce together, and make them work in a positive environment needed a lot of thought.

All work had ceased, and all orders cancelled. With retail at a standstill, there were no avenues to sell anything that one would make. In such times, how does one sail through with the team afloat and positivity intact.

As the Business Head, I had to figure out the way forward. I shortlisted three key aspects to focus on. The steps taken helped me retain the motivation amongst the team and helped us to prepare ourselves for the times to come.

Here are the 3 Point Plan that I followed in the last few months, generating amazingly positive results:

  1. SANITY & DISCIPLINE
  • How many of us are self-driven? And how many of us need a boss to drive us!
  • The self-driven are also disciplined and automatically get into a changed routine with changes of time and occupancy. But they are very few. Most of us belong to that herd which is conditioned to be directed. The current crisis requires such people to be molded as per the need of the hour.
  • When you are bound within your four walls and have no task to do, but to be a couch potato for you don’t know till when, it is imperative that you quickly get into a state of inertia. And that one is difficult to break. The biggest task for a leader is to set a routine for the team to keep their minds occupied with tasks.

My exposure to REMOTE style of working led to creating a disciplined line of activities and a review mechanism for everyone to deliver, wherever they are.

  1. ECONOMIES & VALUE ADDITION
  • Keeping your Business Afloat is the biggest challenge in such times of crisis. What would you do to survive?
  • What good can be done while there is no business coming? Can we keep the team in good humor and engage them in upskilling to gear up the organization towards a changing market environment?
  1. AUSTERITY & RESILIENCE
  • Minimise Costs
  • Improve Cash flow
  • Innovate with changes in market dynamics
  • Change plans & keep going

Today, as the world is recovering from the onslaught of a very unsure market and a changed consumer psyche, we at HHH are geared to grow and flourish as an organization.

About the author

RJ/Shunyalifestyle

Shunya is a journey of fashion veteran, Rajesh Jain, a business strategist in the Fashion & Retail industry. His domains cover all aspects of business – Product, People & Processes. He has journaled here his observations of this ever-changing trends in consumer behaviour and lifestyle.

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