The COVID-19 pandemic changed the perception of organisational resilience at top management level - BCI

According to the latest BCI Crisis Management Report - sponsored by International SOS – the recent COVID-19 pandemic has changed the perception of organisational resilience at top management level.

Indeed, results show that there has been an increase in the level of education on resilience issues as well as an increased appreciation of the importance of organisational resilience.

Meanwhile, top management engagement and appreciation of crisis management has improved as a result of the pandemic.

In some organisations, the pandemic has pushed the level of top management engagement down to exercises; and professionals are using the momentum to ensure that this newfound appreciation remains in the long run even after the pandemic is over.

In the past, BCM professionals highlighted that ‘siloing’ of information, lack of collaboration, and an underappreciation of the importance of organisational resilience has led to crises being poorly managed.

In some organisations it was also questioned who the crisis management champion should be - and according to some, the CEO was not suitable for this role.

In terms of top management involvement during a crisis, the BCI Crisis Management Report showed mixed results. While some organisations reported varying degrees of input and trust from senior management; others reported that management had a high degree of trust in their tactical and operational teams and only requested to be informed of decisions made.

In some cases, senior management took on the decision-making role due to incumbent working practices and/or a lack of trust in the ability of individuals and departments to make their own decisions.

How organisational resilience is perceived by top management – and how it is embedded within a company’s culture - is a crucial factor in how effective its crisis response will be in the face of a crisis. This encompasses different elements such as trust, collaboration, and communication.

The BCI Crisis Management Report shows that teams’ ability to interact with other functions and “network” culture were among the key factors that enabled their organisation to endure the crisis effectively.