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Adapting to a New Normal

2500 years ago, a Greek philosopher wrote that the only constant in life is change. Lately, changes seem to be gathering speed.

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended individuals and companies. Fake news is now an industry disrupting the way citizens consume information. Climate change, often framed as a burden forfuture generations, is finally being recognized as a present threat.

How can businesses prepare for and adapt to a changing, uncertain and complex environment? NBS is identifying how business can cope ­– and even thrive – amidst disruption.

Manage during COVID-19

Sparked by the pandemic, experts identify best practices for businesses during crises. They look for ways to find a better “new normal” after COVID-19.

Prepare for the Future

NBS research can help you plan, shift your organization, and think about issues in new ways. We offer deep dives into:

Strategic Planning

This guide identifies four ways of preparing for the future, from forecasting to transformative scenario planning. The right choice depends on your organization’s ability to shape the future, and on how much uncertainty you face.

Long-Term Thinking

Here’s how — and why — to get your organization looking beyond the next quarterly report and tackling longer-term challenges.

Focus on the System

Many issues can’t be solved or managed by one company alone. That’s because they’re affected by different stakeholders, government policy, and much more. These are variously called “grand challenges,” “systems” issues, and “wicked” problems.

How can you address them? NBS resources tackle this question in multiple ways.

The podcast series “Leading Positive Change in a Time of Disruption,” explores different ways of thinking about transitions. Experts from academia and practice discuss specific topics from digital disruption to employee transitions.

“Systems thinking” is perhaps the best general strategy for analyzing these big issues. Explore systems thinking with an overview from researcher John Sterman and continue with features From Tima’s Desk .

Because collaboration is so important, NBS offers guidance on how to work with different partners: communities, NGOs, citizens, government,  and even competitors

Climate Change – Ground Zero for Change

Climate change is a disruption that’s already here. Canada and other countries are seeing increased storms, flooding, drought, and forest fires.

These weather changes have real business impacts. They can translate into office closures and absent employees, increased or unpredictable energy costs, disrupted construction or logistics and unavailable resources or raw materials.

Through a multi-year project, NBS has identified identify how organizations can respond to climate change in a way that makes business sense.

There are some steps every organization can take, from understanding vulnerabilities to seeking data for decisions.

Leaders in different sectors are already responding. NBS case studies showcase those leading efforts for companies in the travel, transportation, utilities, insurance, and retail sectors.

We’re in This Together

How is your company managing the #New Normal? Share your ideas and experiences. Comment below or write to info@nbs.net.

We wrote this article in 2017, before COVID. We’ve updated it now, with information on the change affecting everyone’s lives.

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