As the novel coronavirus pandemic progresses, business leaders are telling our colleagues and us that they have never experienced anything like this before. There is no script for dealing with a crisis that is this far-reaching and unpredictable. The only way to respond effectively is to decide what actions to take as the situation unfolds. For many decades, we at McKinsey have helped leaders navigate all manner of crises across sectors all over the world. While different challenges require different responses, and even though the current climate is new for all of us, we’ve found it useful to draw on our years of experience to identify some practices that can help. Here are five practices that can help you lead your organization through this unsettled time.
Build a network of teams
In routine emergencies such as a fire in a factory, senior executives can direct a predefined response. But in a fast-changing situation like the coronavirus outbreak, a small executive group can’t collect information or make decisions quickly enough to respond effectively.