Written by Olivia Zajakala, DBA Student
Covid-19, known as Corona Virus, that broke up in 2020, is according to Mitroff, “one of the worst crises in every sense” (Mitroff, 2020). As crisis continues, business leaders admit that they have never experienced a situation like this before (McKinsey, 2020). Unknown is always interesting to discover and study as it gives an opportunity to learn and take a lesson for the future. Covid-19 was not known before and it would be interesting to study its impact on the organizations – What difficulties and challenges have the leaders come across? What tools, communication, resources and solutions have been used in order to cope with the crisis? These questions call for the answers.
Global Pandemic has already impacted various industries, organizations, productions, supply chains and consumption and it is already considered as the third and greatest economic, financial and social crisis of the XXI st Century, following the September 11th and Financial Crisis of 2008 (Gurria, 2020). Mitroff states that apart from the obvious connection between the virus and the financial markets, little attention has been given to other important connections (Mitroff, 2020). This is where a gap can be seen and this is the reason why I would like to focus on crisis management and leadership challenges during the pandemic crisis let alone studying the challenges the leaders faced, inquiring what tools, communication, solutions and resources have been used in order to cope with the crisis based on the examples of the respective companies. Situation like Covid-19 crisis has never happened before and we will not find a ready “recipe” how to manage the company and what tools and mechanisms should the leaders put in place during Covid-19. However, literature provides us with certain leadership competencies during crisis and they should be analyzed further. The research aims at presenting crisis management during the pandemic along with the specific leadership competencies and solutions and tools that some leaders in Switzerland took during the crisis as well as the lessons they have learnt. After all, effective response to a crisis has an impact on company’s reputation, productivity and overall success. What we learn from the pandemic crisis now, can help us in the future.