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"... He returned the faith in ourselves to be able to make great and significant changes!" - Karolina Peric. Director, IMACO Systemtechnik - BIH

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"... Antonio has succeeded in three months what we have been trying to do for years..." Dejan Milovanović - AutoMilovanović

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"... With Antonio we dramatically improved our cash flow ..." - Edvard Varda, Director, Zoo hobby

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How to manage a crisis, problems, but also regular tasks and projects in 6 steps?

Like any crisis, this one caused by a corona virus pandemic has certain regularities and it is possible to dissect it and make a model that can serve us to deal with any other crisis or problem in this way. This method consists of 6 steps:

Analyse this - first we need to see what's happening. Just like we want to know how many people are infected, how long infection lasts, how many incubation lasts, who it usually attacks, what is the mortality, etc. There are multiple methods of analyzing data that can tell us a lot about every problem - whether we use observation and by recording occurrences, eventual anomalies and regularities, whether using technology and "mining" data, transactions and processes with the various tools available. It is important that we establish a system for collecting data and identifying regularities that can serve us in order to better describe the problem we are facing.

"Stop the bleeding" - The most important thing for the corona is to find the causes in order to better understand the disease. We ask where the virus comes from, who can transmit it, how does it behave? In order to solve any problem or crisis, it is necessary to find the causes in order to "stop the bleeding". The hardest thing to do is race with the virus and hope that more people will heal than they get infected, that is, in business, that we make fewer mistakes than we detect them or we generate more revenue than costs and expenses. It is equally difficult to shoot a moving target. If we do not know what the cause of the problem is, it will constantly give us additional problems no matter how quickly we deal with the consequences. There are two types of causes: causes that have arisen in the past and causes that will arise in the future. 

Strategize - When defining causes, we have to define which path to take and what policy to adopt. When governments confronted the Crown virus, they each embarked on a different strategy. Some went into total isolation, while others let life go on with hygiene and spacing measures. Some went through mass testing. So, we need to define a strategy to deal with a crisis or problem. Some businesses are offensive and have strong marketing campaigns and lie in the sales force. Some are very cost conscious and compete on prices while others go for flexibility with the customer, building an agile supply chain and high level of service.

Do it! - In parallel with discussions and decisions on strategy, we must also make operational decisions and work to combat contagion in the field. There are two basic types of measures we can take: Mitigation measures and counteracting measures. When we talked about causes, we talked about causes in the past and in the future. So now we are talking about operational measures that address the causes in the past and those that will arise in the future. Measures that address causes of the past are so-called corrective measures. Imagine a roof leaking and you need to address the causes that have arisen in the past - a hole in the roof. The corrective measure is to patch a hole in the roof. However, addressing the causes that will arise in the future is due to preventive measures such as periodic roof inspections and the use of better quality materials, etc.

Responsibility - The agreed measures should be determined who is responsible and by whom they should be implemented and by when. We understand that nothing will be done if no one is responsible or everyone is responsible (no personalized "culprit"). In the event of a crisis, crisis headquarters have been set up which have a competent person at their helm, and who has a team (in this case, police, epidemiologists, medical workers, etc.). Each business project or decision must define what needs to be done, what is the deadline or milestone by when it needs to be done and whom to inform. We must not forget the communication and feed-back that should go in both directions: bottom-up (from the field to the central staff of the project team, etc.), but also top-down (regular communication from the leadership to the others). It is very important that information flows in both directions as the number of rumors and unnecessary responses to them is reduced.

Measurement and monitoring - Finally, it is necessary to have established measurement methods, KPIs, measures and standards against which these measures are compared. So, just as in a corona virus crisis, twice a day is reported on how many infected, how many fatal cases and how many healed people. So in each project, job or endeavour, three optimal measures should be defined that best depict the situation and monitor it in real time. It is important to define and compare the standard. That means to establish a benchmark either with us or with some external standard or norm to see how it is progressing. Equally important is the transparency and visibility of these KPIs and, of course, understandability for everyone who works, measures, reports and makes decisions based on them.

Once we have mastered these steps we can use them for any task, problem, project or initiative.