‘Digital was the common thread that held us together’

By Manish Sharma, President and CEO, Panasonic India

From a business perspective, ‘digital’ was the common thread that held us together, helping us reboot and re-innovate. From an individual perspective, the lockdown was time to pause, introspect and recalibrate strategy to make ourselves more resilient, ensuring business continuity while prioritising safety of our people.

The foremost step that I took was – formation of a Covid Task Force. Reviewing the situation real-time, we created a strategy to combat the situation, following strict protocols.

Second was practising mindfulness as the pandemic continued to spread rapidly and opportunity losses prolonged. Summer was a complete washout and with the festive season nearing, we decided to resume operations with cautious optimism. Unlock 1.0 helped resume sales and operations with phase 2 we analysed consumer demand; optimised supply chain model; streamlined costs; while digital continued to be the epicentre of our approach.

Empathy and clear vision helped align us towards the path to recovery. A bustling office was now transformed into three zones, ensuring social distancing, masks, temperature checks, sanitisers with restricted movements. Manufacturing plants and retail units were no different. This resulted in containing the situation and seamlessly restarting business. With e-commerce deliveries, rural uptick and consumer preferences shifting to value-based appliances for multi-tasking, demand is on a continuous rise.

As told to Rica Bhattacharyya

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