The Covid-19 pandemic is undoubtedly one of the biggest disruptions of our time. Asides the plethora of economic challenges it has birthed, it has brought to the fore many of the deficiencies that lie within existing business operations and governmental infrastructures across the world.
For businesses to succeed, experts that gathered at the recent FITC’s webinar, which was tagged ‘Leadership in an Agile and Digital Economy,’ proffered solution to ensure growth regardless of what life/COVID-19 tosses at them. With technology at the forefront of today’s disruptive business environment, the experts, who were selected across sectors of the economy, emphasised that business owners must seek out ways to not just optimize the technological tools at their disposal, but they must also be able to optimize all available resources so as to stay far ahead of the competition.
With the advent of Artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and the internet of things, Board Chairman, Afrinvest Securities, Fatumata Coker, tasked Nigerian business owners to adapt to the changing times in order to grow their businesses. According to her, some of the tools and what they do, make processes better for organisations that are determined to survive times like this.
She said, “As you examine: the top, the culture, the people and the processes of your organization, find where your organization is ready and what is missing and how you might fill the gap, so you are ready to either adapt or disrupt.”
Co-founder and GMD/ CEO Bluechip Technologies Limited, Kazeem Tewogbade, in his presentation tagged “Future Proofing the Organization for Digital Disruptions,” explained the term to mean the change that occurs when new digital technologies and business models affect the value proposition of existing goods and services.
According to him, some of the hallmarks of an agile organisation are the existence of an actionable strategy, the existence of clear and robust structures, efficient processes; people, fostered by the existence of a cohesive community as well as entrepreneurial drive, evolving technology architecture, and a system where learning is continuous.
He said, “The key thing for organizations will be to start seeing themselves as not so radical as even scholars say flatten things out completely…. I think it is important for business leaders and executives to start seeing the need to reorient their organizational structure such that it can actually support their quest to be able to adapt and innovate faster.”
On the need for entrepreneurs to think out of the box, Managing Director, Future Software Resources, Nkemdilim Begho, explained that the company must be willing to leverage technology & automation as a strategic enabler, leverage data and insights to unlock value.
“Businesses that want to survive this period must be flexible with the ability to rapidly adapt and steer itself in a new direction, minimize handovers and bureaucracy, empower people by building stronger, have a culture that motivates employees to innovate and governance that enable faster decision-making, partner with others in their ecosystem to gain new digital capabilities and involve customers in its design process,” she said.
Managing Director/CEO, FITC, Mrs Chizor Malize, explained that entrepreneurs must seek out ways to not just optimize the technological tools at their disposal, but they must also be able to optimize all available resources so as to stay far ahead of the competition. According to her, the seminar was organised to address the knowledge gap and to state how businesses can move from ‘surviving’ to ‘thriving’.
She said, “Leaders in an economy such as what we are facing now will need to be very agile and digitally driven to rebuild their operations and begin to reinvent new ways of work that will not only position their organization for the next normal but position them to thrive and win and also sustain this growth.”
For companies that adapt to the changing times, she noted improved efficiencies and productivity, better & faster decision-making, innovation and new expertise, healthy bottom line, improved customer experience, improved stakeholder engagement, and employees freed up to work on value-add activities.
About FITC: Established in 1981, FITC was created as a non-profit organisation limited by guarantee to provide capacity building and knowledge hub for the Nigerian Financial Services Sector. It’s Institutional Members are members of the Nigerian Banker’s Committee, comprises of the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation and all licensed banks in Nigeria.