During the COVID-19 crisis, we at MIT SMR want to support our readers by offering free resources to help during the pandemic.
Amid pandemic-driven market changes, vulnerable sectors have seen revenues dwindle dramatically while demand for certain products skyrockets. Taking a strategic response to unprecedented circumstances — by making innovative adjustments to infrastructure, product offerings, service portfolios, or route to market — can offer proactive organizations significant new opportunities.
Just months ago, CEOs of 181 of the country’s largest corporations signed a celebrated Business Roundtable document, promising to elevate worker interests. Now, some are furloughing employees, paying out shareholder dividends, and provoking complaints that their workers are poorly protected from COVID-19. Peter S. Goodman, for The New York Times, reports on how some signatories have moderated their cost-cutting to spare workers, while others seem to be undercutting their pledge.
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In ordinary times, competition among individual pharmaceutical companies boosts innovation and spurs the invention of new or better drugs and vaccines. But the pharma industry’s competition-based model could be a real liability in the race to combat COVID-19. Some scientists are now advocating for pharma companies and partners to temporarily pause their traditional ways of doing business and find new ways to work together.
The coronavirus crisis, catastrophic for many companies, has made already powerful Amazon even more dominant. Consumer spending on the site is up 35% from the same period last year, and the company has hired 80,000 new workers in a matter of weeks. The exponential spread of this pandemic has expanded Amazon’s power exponentially — but at what cost?
Supply chain systems and processes, unfortunately, aren’t designed for once-in-a-lifetime disruption and recovery. How can a company fashion a recovery plan, given huge uncertainties?
What Else We’re Reading This Week:
- Four lessons to learn from the pandemic
- Seamless digital services are seriously convenient but can invite serious digital security risks
- We’re working remotely but still spending way too much time in meetings
Quote of the Week:
“Diversity and inclusion is not only our society’s biggest challenge, it’s our society’s biggest opportunity. If we figure this out, the economic prosperity that we will all achieve, in the sense of fairness and decency across all of our people in our communities, will be amazing. We can’t solve this by ourselves. … If we come together, and we all solve this issue, we all prosper, and we do the right thing. And from my perspective, this is the biggest opportunity we have to drive even more economic prosperity in our country.”
—Tim Ryan, U.S. chairman and senior partner of PwC, in the Three Big Points episode “The CEO’s Problem to Solve”