COVID-19 Scenarios: Planning for the Future
The world has been turned upside down. How long is this going to last for? How are consumers and businesses changing their behaviour? What actions could be taken to get through this, responding to these new and rapidly evolving needs?
Like everyone else, White Space Strategy has spent most of the past month planning then acting to ensure business continuity. However, in parallel to this, we’ve opened up channels of communication with a wide range of senior medical, civil service and business experts, allowing us to keep on top of developments and constantly evolve our plans.
We’re continuing to hold conversations this week, and will be translating these into a short free report summarising possible scenarios and implications for our clients and connections.
Early insights coming through include:
- There are two contrasting views emerging amongst senior advisors influencing government policy. Medics believe a ‘safety first’ approach is essential. Civil servants and business leaders believe this needs to be tempered against the needs of the economy
- In every likely scenario, businesses will have to adapt significantly
- The period of disruption will be long enough to mean that significant investment in new business models and offerings will be required for many businesses to survive
- Doctors and medics believe there is a critical need for a more prolonged period of lockdown. They advocate for the current lockdown phase to last another 4-6 months. After this, significant restrictions would be required on movement and social interaction for up to a further year.
- Civil servants and economists believe that medical needs will have to be balanced with the economy and people’s patience
- They believe a compromise option might consist of another 3-4 weeks of the current lockdown, followed by 2-3 months of something similar but slightly more relaxed. Social distancing would follow until Oct/ Nov, with some kind of normality resuming before Christmas (in time to give shops and the nation a huge boost)
- There’s common acknowledgement that Covid-19 is not going to go away quickly, and that developing effective treatments and vaccines will take significant time
- Embracing digital service delivery and remote working/ collaboration is something many companies would benefit from hugely anyway. Covid-19 will accelerate the pace of change in this direction, which will have lasting impact and potentially long term benefits for the economy
White Space are developing these viewpoints into a practical set of scenarios for use within business planning. We will also identify potential actions businesses could take to change their offerings because of them.
Send us a message if you would like to receive a copy of this work free of charge. Also please message us if you would like to contribute to this work and share your own points of view. We don’t have all the answers (!) and would love to hear from you.