18+ months – overview of authors’ pandemic resilience in Bangalore Business LitFest 2021

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The seventh edition Bangalore Economic Literature Festival (BBLF) will be held entirely online this year, due to the coronavirus pandemic. As a media partner of the festival, see Your storys cover of editions in 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, and 2015.

See also Your story‘s Book review section with reviews of over 320 titles, and our compilation of 85 quotes on World Book Day.

BBLF 2021 will be held on September 21 and 23. Our previous preview articles have covered starting tips and recovery after failure. As the pandemic crisis has raged for more than 18 months in India, the authors discuss eight aspects of resilience – from business shifts and digital transformation to cultural assertiveness and crisis preparedness.

1. Preparing for crises

“The best examples of business resilience have occurred in companies that had ‘vaccinated’ their business with a vaccine called people power, or engagement associated with culture and positivity,” explains R Gopalakrishnan, author of over 15 management books, including A biography of innovations and Wisdom for adult startups.

“I call this vaccine PP-365 because it is the best vaccine to create sustainable and sustainable businesses,” he sums up succinctly.

Deloitte Global report finds companies with built-in resilience were better equipped to handle crisis, says Dr Karthik Nagendra, CEO of ThoughtStarters and author of The thought leader method: running your business with thought leadership in a changing world.

“I think the companies that were successful during the pandemic had some things in common. They had already invested in workforce initiatives like reconversion their employees or redraw work, ”he observes.

“They had diversified their operations and developed technological capabilities to drive new business models. They had adapted to teleworking, ensured employee safety and maintained trust between leaders and employees, ”adds Karthik.

These organizations value diversity, equity and inclusion and are committed to improving the environment and strengthening communities. “Thoughtful leadership focused on research, Collaboration among all stakeholders and focused on customer success will have a big impact in the current era, ”advises Karthik.

2. A return to traditional strengths

“The pandemic has affected people all over the world. The way people live and work has changed, perhaps irreversibly, ”observes Kaninika Mishra, author of The Quotient Indic: Reclaiming Heritage through Cultural Enterprise.

“In India, the uncertainties and vulnerabilities caused by the pandemic have seen people turn to familiar traditions prepare physically and mentally, ”she adds. The demand for turmeric as well as online yoga and meditation classes is said to have increased.

Kaninika notes that many small businesses have been more resilient and used imaginative ways to keep their business going than large organizations.

“I’ve seen yoga entrepreneurs with a 100% physical teaching model switch to an online mode overnight,” she recalls. Another company engaged in hand-woven products started mask making in a week when the sale of non-essential products fell to zero.

3. Business transformation

“I’ve seen founders really innovate and think outside the box, in the darkest times. Resilience has been tested on the financial, technological, operational and organizational fronts ”, recalls Bhavna Dalal, Founder and CEO of Talent Power Partners, and author of Checkmate Political Bureau.

Many have quickly changed and transformed their business models. “It was a survival of the strongest and bravest. Of course there was disappointment earlier but people recovered quickly and kept going, ”she adds, citing the example of the founders of a coworking space who turned their offices into facilities. quarantine.

4. Work from home

“Companies, which previously insisted on working six days a week, have learned the benefits of allowing people to work more flexibly from home. This is a significant shift in the mindset, which is about to change the very job market, ”says V Raghunathan, BBLF Chair and author of bestsellers such as Indian Games Play and Ganesha on the dashboard.

“The emerging model, in some ways, has been more favorable to women. It is more environmentally friendly leading to less fuel emissions, and more favorable to the labor market by creating new labor markets, in particular in the markets for the delivery of food and groceries, ”he adds.

There have also been breakthroughs in the use of technology to deliver online education and notable developments in healthcare. “Of course, many of them have their downside, especially when you consider the problems of children out of school for almost two years, or technical education without laboratory work, ”warns Raghunathan.

5. Brand power

Changes in business and marketing practices are cited by Jessie Paul, CEO of B2B consulting firm, Paul Writer and author of Marketing without money: from a beginner to a big brand on a frugal budget.

For example, Bajaj Consumer Service launched a whole new category of products – hand sanitizer – in the middle of the lockdown, as it was the need of the market. “They also intensified their digital presence in all product lines, as the ‘place of purchase’ had changed,” she explains.

Some brands have had to change their delivery models from in-person to remote delivery. “Those who had already embarked on the digital transformation were on the verge of success,” adds Jesse.

“In some product categories where the rules restricted business, resilience was in stay in the minds of consumers, manage employee branding to the extent possible and find unaffected niches to maintain the revenue stream, ”she observes.

She advises companies to understand whether their customer has changed due to the current crisis. Frameworks such as the ‘4 P’ (product, price, location, promotion) can help set up the scenario.

6. Digital transformation

“Every company that survived was smart enough to adapt. Many companies have adopted D2C, online deliveries and even WFH ”, explains Suresh Narasimha, tech entrepreneur, co-founder of CoCreate Ventures and owner of JustBooks.

“I am particularly proud of the way one of our companies Place of culture adapted to the pandemic and began to offer organized learning experiences, ”he adds. Instead of limiting itself to cultural events in physical spaces, it also offers online storytelling, workshops and interactive sessions on music, math and science.

“The pandemic has been a boon for digitally driven brands that were ready to seize the opportunity be it coffee or entertainment,” says Jesse Paul.

Now, digital transformation is the buzzword. “But that won’t be enough to give a competitive advantage, only to ensure survival. Catch-up brands must see beyond digital transformation operational efficiency, access to whole new market segments, ”she emphasizes.

7. Media changes

Some publishers have pivoted intelligently during the pandemic, according to Rishad Tobaccowala, Senior Advisor of Publicis Groupe and author of Restoring the soul of the company: staying human in the data age.

“My publisher HarperCollins quickly turned to using Gloss to distribute the book globally and virtually. Their virtual events were another form of resilience, ”he explains. “My book seems to have anticipated the main challenges and opportunities we face, which makes people think I wrote it after COVID when it was written in 2019,” he adds.

8. The festival industry

The challenges of the pandemic have also affected book fairs and cultural festivals. BBLF had to switch to a online format for the first time in 2020, and will also be virtual this year.

“As there is fatigue today about virtual events, the challenge is how to get people interested in an online trade literature festival. We have therefore chosen topical, topical and topical subjects ”, explains Benoît Paramanand, Co-founder of BBLF.

He cites the transformation of the workplace and the rise of literary technology platforms as other examples of resilience and growth. Other topics that will be discussed at the three-day festival next week include Indian commercial writing, political changes and the future of Indian science.

Edited by Teja Lele Desai
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