A global perspective means taking a fresh, holistic, view of the organization’s role in the wider commercial and social environment. For example, traditional boundaries between industry sectors have been blurring so that most large organizations now straddle a number of traditional categories. It is now perfectly possible, for example, to think of an organization as being as much a data company as a retailer or a logistics company; another might be a data company, a hospitality company and a travel company. Data is, of course, the lowest common denominator and will be the bedrock of nearly every organization everywhere.
Data represents an immensely valuable resource, essential for improving connectivity to various stakeholder groups:
- building trust with shareholders
- increasing customer empathy and loyalty
- improving employee engagement
- developing stronger relationships with ecosystem and alliance partners
These are just some of the relationships that will fuel future growth.
The rising sensitivities around data protection and cyber-security must also be considered when planning resilience-building activities. This points to probably the most vital element of all, in an ever more amorphous business and social environment, to build trust. As old boundaries soften between sectors, geographies and categories and even between commercial, political and charitable operations, trust will be the touchstone for the resilient organization. Trust must be engendered not just in customers and employees but across wide, interconnected stakeholder networks that have become so influential in driving company performance. There was a time when companies either did well or did good. With a holistic global perspective, it is entirely realistic to aspire to do both. As Confucius observed: “without trust we cannot stand”.
Over the past year, as the pandemic struck global communities, it led to waves of social concern for the health of the planet. Paradoxically, reduced economic activity, also caused a drop in CO2 emissions and improved air quality in many of the most vulnerable parts of the world. International opinion polls have confirmed that concern for the environment has risen markedly and that there is a growing conviction that the human activities responsible for global warming and environmental degradation could, if left unchecked, threaten the survival of populations across the world. Consumers are increasingly acting on their convictions, reducing their energy usage, consuming less and recycling more to live more sustainably. They are demanding that big business does their part as well. This poses a range of resilience challenges for organizations everywhere. Is the supply chain as eco-friendly as it could be? Is the carbon footprint declining fast enough? How much has energy consumption fallen taking account of remote working? The list, of course, expands exponentially with deeper analysis as the number of fields under scrutiny rises. The resilient organization should anticipate a tightening customer grip on these issues, driven by increased political and consumer pressure and should act now to ensure that it is fully prepared for changing customer expectations and advancing legislation. It would also benefit from seeking objective analysis and validation to enable it to retain the stakeholder trust and confidence that it will need to thrive in the future.
Deloitte is a forward-thinking, global organization that spans all disciplines. We offer a comprehensive range of objective services to clients across the world to help build their resilience and enable them to thrive, whatever change is happening around them. We earn the trust of our clients and partners by making an impact that matters. Which is why we’re here for you.