Buried in this morning’s Reuters story Social networking sites “good for businesses” is a clear general management strategy for winning in an economic downturn.
First, about the social networking sites:
“The value of networking within an economic downturn is perhaps more important than ever and I believe it could mean the difference between a business collapsing or capitalizing on the tricky conditions.”
Isn’t that overstating the case for the power of social networking in business? Anyway…
“In today’s difficult business environment, the instinctive reaction can be to batten down the hatches and return to the traditional ‘command and control’ techniques that enable managers to closely monitor and measure productivity,” he said.
“Allowing workers to have more freedom and flexibility might seem counterintuitive, but it appears to create business more capable of maintaining stability.”
I couldn’t agree with this more. This isn’t limited to social networking or managing employees, nor is it limited to a given economic outcome.
This is a broad management principle to apply at all times.
Those who contract and close off their options in fear will not come out winners. There is always risk involved in success.
There is an advantage to those who maintain a sense of abundance and operate from that place to empower their employees and their partners, and ultimately their customers. That advantage is even larger in a challenging climate.
The majority’s fear of risk and reduced spending during “economic nuclear winter” results in better availability of resources on the one hand and creates demand to fill vacuums on the other. That makes it less costly, less risky, and increases payoffs to make smart moves to fill a vacuum.
More freedom and flexibility for staff and social networking at work are just small examples.
Whatever happens to the economy in the coming months, this will be a time of big wins for those inspired to move beyond fear and try new things.