With Covid-19 disrupting business operations, new norms of conduct and behavior have become prevalent. HN explores what corporate culture and values in the hospitality industry will look like post-pandemic with Naim Maadad, chief executive and founder of Gates Hospitality.
A rigid approach
Humankind has not faced a medical challenge to the humongous scale we experienced recently during the pandemic.
During such challenging times, the most impractical route to take is a rigid and static approach that whatever the outcome, we will not adapt to the changed realities of the world around us. This stringent attitude would cause disastrous consequences in more ways than one. My take on the right approach would be to stay focused on the brand ethos and pillars of the organization. Find the right balance to adapt to the market conditions and business direction for survival.
What are the gains?
There is no doubt that the events of the past year have resulted in a marked shift in corporate cultures and how well the leadership understands these paradigm shifts and takes course correct actions to ride through the turbulence in a smoother manner.
One of the main gains during this period of disruption is that despite physical distancing being the norm, this unusual period has brought respect, a consistent sense of support, personal attention and recognition to the forefront. People are being appreciated for the efforts they are putting in to go the extra mile to stay on course and ride the rough, turbulent waves.
There is a strong sense of pride among the team over what their organization and the leadership stood for and jointly accomplished to fight these challenges. This signifies an increased awareness of the brand and company culture than ever before. How the leadership led from the front has indeed made a huge impact on the team’s sense of belonging to the organization they are associated with.
Another positive outcome is the tremendous sense of empowerment and willful accountability that was imparted on the employees who rose beyond their job description and jointly fought the battle.
These have all contributed hugely in a favorable manner to sustaining many businesses and helped them survive better than many other counterparts have fallen short and wound up on the way due to a rigid approach and less malleable attitude.
The pandemic did have a massive impact too; companies furloughed employees and those who were fortunate did face considerable pay-cuts while their responsibilities grew.
What does the future hold for businesses?
Hospitality businesses need to reenforce their brand ethos and stick to the pillars on which the organization was originally established. It is not the responsibility of the few but a joint effort where every employee chips in.
Riding the pandemic wave with positivity is a step in the right direction. Identifying the potential benefits of these cultural shifts will certainly permit businesses to thrive amid the confusion and have a greater chance of survival.