BRIDGETOWN, Guyana, April 30, 2021 - The book, entitled The New Normal – The Post-COVID Primer For Business, has been touted as a timely and valuable publication for regional business leaders to read and utilise to help their businesses adapt and thrive in a post-COVID environment.
Minister in the Ministry of Foreign Trade, Sandra Husbands, gave this review and commendation while delivering remarks at the launch of the book, authored by Assistant Secretary-General, Trade and Economic Integration, CARICOM Secretariat, Joseph Cox.
Minister Husbands noted that the COVID-19 pandemic is a watershed moment, which has caused a disruption and altered the trajectory of how trade and all other business activity is conducted across the globe, and therefore demands new courses of action to achieve previous goals of economic development.
“Today, nations, enterprises and individuals must seize the gap created by this crisis. Seize the gap as countries reposition to enable food and nutrition security and health security…. Seize the gap in production shortages, as it presents the opportunity to introduce our citizens to more local and regional goods, before we are swamped again by extra regional goods.
“Can enterprises using this book and its guidance seize the opportunities in these gaps? …Can business people use this book to be inspired to be a new generation of entrepreneurs commanding better market share in their own backyards? … Can the encouragement of this book about repositioning, producing and marketing to the new normal realities where we repackage, redesign what we do and how we deliver to suit slimmer pockets so our businesses and our families survive and then mutually thrive in the new normal? I say yes, this book can help us do that,” Minister Husbands asserted.
Author Joseph Cox explained that regional business leaders do not have the luxury to wait until there is co-access to the required vaccines for herd immunity before focusing on “new operating ethos”.
He said the publication acts as a guiding operating principle, including strategies that could be implemented to help businesses adapt and thrive.
Mr. Cox stated: “Businesses that will survive the period of transition to the “new normal” are those that exhibit a bold vision, a willingness to innovate; practise discipline, execution and adapt with agility. This requires optimisation of the labour force, and in that regard, upskilling and rescaling are integral accelerators for the future growth of businesses.”
The 10-chapter book, which is essentially a “how to guide” on operating in the “new normal”, covers subject areas such as transformational restart; business continuity; optimising assets; digital transformation; communications; marketing; broadening customer engagement; human resource research strategies; business of the state and emerging industries in the region.
Mr. Cox is urging people to view this publication in the same light as they would “a non-contributory pension plan provided by the community, as the strategies offered in this publication seeks to secure the future of our business community as we forge ahead, united with fixity of purpose”.
It will also be the source document for a series of webinars, slated to be held in each member state over the next six to nine months, which will be led by Mr. Joseph with inputs from other team members from the CARICOM Secretariat, in conjunction with experts.
The New Normal – The Post-COVID Primer For Business is available for download free of charge on the CARICOM website, as a compressed PDF file. There is also an audio version available for download. The ‘epub’ version has been delayed, but will be available in due course.