We live in strange times, but do we know the real extent of the pandemic’s impact on the market and business strategy ? Is there a possibility of a recession due to COVID-19?

Aspire’s in-house expert Chenthil Eswaran has 25 years experience in leading go-to market strategy implementation, and heads Enterprise Business Applications at Aspire Systems. He recently published his book, “Navigating through the digitally-fluid landscape: A real-world guide for C-suiters on Enterprise Business Applications”. Catch him here in conversation with Elizabeth Hotson, BBC Business & Economics journalist and Podcast host, and Business Analyst David Norfolk.

Chenthil explains that no one could’ve predicted the impact that a phenomenon like the global COVID-19 pandemic could have had on businesses globally, which is one reason that sectors such as retail and travel were so hard hit and caught unawares. However, as the saying goes, “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”. Amid this chaos there were some businesses that became resilient and adapted to their ‘new normal’.

“As odd as it sounds, there was a digital travel agency that started to sell medical and safety products on its platform and they were successful in doing so. Another company that sold sim cards also began selling masks which soon became one of the hottest selling products”, Chenthil says. Of course, there are exceptions. “SaaS players or banks can’t use the same strategy but the key here is that they should revisit their business model and unearth new opportunities for service innovation”.

It was never about going digital based on what is trending. “Some firms focus all their digital transformation efforts on boosting their operational efficiency or delivering a great customer experience. But it is a mistake”. Because being digitised should ideally be in the DNA of the company based on the nature of industry, seeking change that is practical and sustainable. There is a need for adaptability in a world that is becoming increasingly fluid. The good news is that today, there exist more opportunities to make your technology ecosystem more agile and scalable by adapting modern business applications. “Earlier the pandemic was a probability, then it became a possibility, finally it is a reality”. So C-suite executives must endeavour to come with strategies that make their businesses resilient to all risky probabilities and possibilities

David Norfolk throws emphasis on ‘Immutable business’, which means a business constantly in a state of evolution to adapt to the changing business environment. Ideally, the pandemic should be just another stage in your business model’s adaptation to what’s going on. It has to be a continuous journey involving all stakeholders.

Hear what these digital transformation experts have to say about pandemic-proof business models, adapting to the “Uberisation Economy”, digital fluidity and cultural transformation.

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