Business Response Plan: From Intensive Care to Recovery

In Part 1 of this blog, we identified four stages you can take to proactively lead your organization through the uncertainty and down the road to recovery.

Once you have taken care of the most urgent tasks in the “Emergency Room” phase, it is time to start treating your business to lead it towards longer term stabilisation, recovery and repositioning.

2. Moving through Intensive Care

Main Priority: Address the unhealthy areas in your organization and enlist the larger organization in your response.

Establish stakeholder communication plan

During times of uncertainty, increased communication is vital.

Who are your key stakeholders?

How often should you be in contact?

What is the best media and approach?

Implement employee care & development plan

During times of crisis, more care and attention is needed, and development challenges are available.

What current needs are your employees facing?

Who can you give development challenges to?

How can you build your culture during this time?

Establish and Track Metrics (Key Vitals)

To ensure rapid responses to changing circumstances, it is essential to keep a pulse on key metrics.

What information do you need to inform your leadership decisions?

What can you measure that will give you close to real time feedback on progress?

Preserve Key Assets

To ensure you can recover in a stronger position, it is important to ensure care of key assets, including:


Customer Relationships

Online Presence

Vendor Relationships

Physical Assets

High Potential Employees

Remove Unhealthy People and Processes

This can be a time to “prune” your organization so that you can come back stronger when the pandemic is over.

Who are the team members that are dragging back your team (Think performance and culture fit)?

Establish a Network of Teams

In times of crisis, a different structure is needed to ensure rapid responses to issues that emerge while limiting organizational red tape and approvals. Keep the following in mind:

Cross-functional teams becomes dominant, the regular structure is secondary.

The network of teams evolve and adapt. Teams form and disband as priorities and challenges change.

This approach requires initiative and self organization.

Stay out of the way, but ensure a high level of transparency and visibility

3. Stabilize & Strengthen

Main Priority: Establish a “new normal” that is productive and healthy, while strengthening your organization and core business so you are ready for recovery.

Establish a new cadence & operational routine

A new cadence and routine is needed during these times to ensure your team is productive and healthy. Consider the following:

What is an effective meeting cadence for your operations & network of teams to ensure quick responses & healthy relational connection?

How can you ensure good visibility & accountability?
Create recovery scenarios

Recovery scenarios will help ensure you are ready when your industry opens up. Consider short, medium, and long term timelines with different market responses (ie. V, U, W recovery scenarios). Key areas to consider include:

Financial projections, operations & staffing, supply chain management, marketing

Consider retooling & repositioning opportunities

Depending on your situation, this may be the ideal time to consider repositioning your entire business, or just retooling aspects of your operations. Form sub-teams to lead your retooling efforts for each area to work through the following process:

Evaluate -> Explore options -> Plan to adjust or pivot

Keep eyes on offense & opportunity

Anytime there is disruption, opportunities to meet needs and provide solutions also abound. Keep your eyes open. Set up a team or individuals to conduct research on things like global trends, market shifts, customer sentiment, and supply chain.

How ready are you to jump on opportunities that may come?

Test ideas & assumptions that emerge!

While in the stabilize stage of your journey, watch for triggers that may signal you need to either head back to the emergency room or that you can prepare to move on to the recovery stage.


4. Recovery

Main Priority: Recover and reposition to restore business health.

Execute appropriate recovery plan. Adapt and pivot as needed.

As you implement your recovery plan, focus on:

Ramping up people & operations

Increase spending to attract customers (evaluate and adjust)

Continue controlling costs (Your team will want to spend after months of holding back)

Implement new processes, systems, standards, etc.

Secure capital (if needed)

Keep the following things in mind:

The environment will most likely still be volatile. You will need to adapt and adjust quickly.

Ensure implementation of new systems and process from the beginning. It can be easy to slip back into old patterns.

Customer sentiment may shift quickly. Stay close to your customers.


>> Read Part 1: Business Response & Recovery Plan to COVID-19


Download the PDF Slide Deck


How BME Can Help:

Business Response Coaching

Help you create clarity in the uncertainty through the development of a systematic plan that ensures that you can lead your organization through the most critical moments toward a healthy recovery

Deep Dive

A facilitated deep dive with your executive team into your most pressing problem areas to help you develop a clear action plan to move you forward

Go on the Offense

Facilitated ideation sessions with your executive team to help you reimagine and restructure your business to emerge from this global crisis in a position of strength


Reach out to schedule a quick call to hear how we can help you lead with clarity in this uncertainty



Photo by Jason Coudriet on Unsplash



Business Response Plan: From Intensive Care to Recovery