Leadership In Times of Crisis – Vol. 4

16 April 2020

As the initial shock of this current crisis begins to dissipate, I find myself thinking about what the world will look like a month from now? 6 months from now? 3 years from now? While it is easy to dwell on all the current and potential negative effects, I also see a window for opportunity. Humanity has been dealt a massive blow, but we have an unprecedented chance to re-build large sectors of our global culture to create a more just, thoughtful and impactful society – but only if we take the time to understand our past shortcomings and failures. I hope this week’s resources help stimulate your optimistic side.

All the best,


As with any crisis of this scale, there is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic will leave an indelible mark on all of humanity. We are all waiting for things to return to normal, but we should acknowledge that the old version of ‘normal’ will never return and we need to prepare for the ‘next normal’. Check out this article from McKinsey which explores what ‘next normal’ may look like.

Times of crisis always provide us with poignant real-world examples of both good and bad leadership and the coronavirus outbreak is no exception. This video from VOX explores South Korea’s response to the pandemic and provides some very interesting insight into how planning and decisive action can help avoid catastrophe.

The COVID-19 outbreak has flipped entire sectors of the economy on their heads, maybe none more so than the food industry. Grocery stores are seeing all-time highs in traffic while restaurants have been devastated. This week’s episode of the Freakonomics podcast explores the impact on the entire food-supply system and what happens when everyone stays home to eat.

Turning our physical offices into virtual spaces was the first obstacle for many of us in the past few weeks. Now that we have the technology and systems in place, the next obstacle becomes how we keep our teams motivated while working remotely. Harvard Business Review explores the topic in one of their most recent articles.

As the old adage goes “never waste a good crisis” and while that phrase may have been overused in recent weeks, that does not make it any less true. Adaptation and flexible strategy are keys to success in more normal times and certainly in times of crisis. Check out this short expose from the New York Times on one business that has made a pivot to their business model in recent weeks.

Your Moment of Levity

Spending the vast majority of our days at home isn’t easy and some of us are handling our self-isolation better than others. So I think we can all relate to this Italian man who just wants to go out for a coffee.

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