MAKING SMART AND TIMELY RESOURCE ALLOCATION DECISIONS IN GOOD TIMES AND ROUGHER TIMES CAN CREATE TIME-CONSUMING ANXIETY, even if the organization is working to add dollars to a particular brand or activity. Currently, there is a great deal of uncertainty in the economy, prompting companies to examine their income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements under added board pressure to preserve cash and improve profitability. Addressing this need or request must be done in a transparent manner by working closely with each functional head. Good leaders provide clarity around the situation and an atmosphere of trust and candor. If headcount reductions are part of the process, a clear employee communications plan is needed to avoid distrust and anxiety, which will complicate the process. Being able to manage and lead through a significant downsizing/cost reduction requires senior management alignment, appropriate and accurate information, and leadership. Addressing the “why” and “how” is critical to a successful implementation. The message and context must be crystal clear. If not, people will become distracted and productivity will wane.
TIM WRIGHT is chairman of the board of directors at Isosceles Pharmaceuticals.