There are silver linings in every situation and as harsh, disruptive and challenging as COVID-19 is, it can still hand companies a great advantage.
Production, shipping and sales have all been severely curtailed, cash flow is tight and most staff have hopefully been put in hibernation or working from home rather than being retrenched.
If listening to our government’s message then we may believe we could come out of this crisis in a strong position.
Keep your new product development out of hibernation. In good times, product development is constantly under time pressure. Hibernation has given us time and we should use it wisely to push forward new development.
The design process and creativity never really sleeps, in fact is does its best work away from the office.
(See blog – Problem Solving – the ‘ride’ approach).
Based on this and building on tested business models of a digitally connected world that many companies have already embraced before COVID-19 and now with the new norm of remote offices (at home or wherever) design departments, engineering and management can quite easily continue with new product development and be ahead of the curve in better times.
This type of remote working is not new and Bortz Product Design and many other companies which have been doing it for years. We have worked for clients we have never met in person. Clients in Europe, Asia, the US and in other states of Australia.
Social media and tools such as Teams, Zoom and Skype allow business to continue and for communities struggling in a time of crisis to work together. Working from home should not be a deterrent from creativity.
Many of our suppliers for moulds and prototypes are not in the same city we are and now as Australia is locked down, our Chinese suppliers are in demand for work. Connecting across borders, building national and international communities for goods and intellectual supply can streamline your processes. This is an opportunity.
Get your ideas out there and start the design process. Get ahead and be in front of the pack.
In fact this is one of the most productive and useful strategies your company could take right now.
Good luck, stay well and get ahead.