Scenario Planning for lockdown business people, or 

What to do till the dust in the air settles

These days we see how what’s going outside is going inside. We observe chaos outside. And experience chaos inside. Chaos is in the very core of everything we read. And chaos comes with relativity. There is nothing certain. Everything is possible. Most think that to take right decisions is up to start perceiving (seeing) what others cannot see. And what we see everywhere are waves of chaos, desperation, and anger. Coming and going. And again.

Emotion is directly linked to our five senses. This is what we see, hear, touch, smell that fires out our overwhelming waves of emotion. But in crisis times it is not what we see, but what we don’t see, that matters.

Rational thinking cools us down. And we are better prepared to take more sensible decisions in this state of mind.

To give advantage to the rational – this is the reason why we start Scenario Planning posts. 

We aim at figuring out what the major trends are going on now, and how they will shape our world shortly. 

These days we hear over and over again 3 questions. Here are the answers we can give and the business needs we can meet with Scenario Planning for business people


When will we recover?

Do we know how long the corona-crisis will go? No.

But we give some tips on how to never let a good crisis go without improving our business perceptions and activities.

How long the consequences of the corona crisis will last?

We don’t know, but we can fairly well say which temporal consequences will become the next norm.

When will we get out of the lockdowns?

We don’t know. But we can give you definite ideas on what to pay attention to while in the lockdown.

We all need this mind shift that will direct our attention from the direct threat to the matters and topics ‘beyond what our eyes see’.

Dnevnik (31.03): ‘So we are part of the largest social experiment that will happen in our lifetime. For several weeks now we have been living in a completely different political and social regime compared to what we have thought to be ‘normal’ yesterday.’


What we see

► The shock begins to upturn established industry structures, resetting competitive positions, maybe inadvertently.

► Different geographies will recover at different speed

► It is possible that the virus returns in the winter, especially If there’s no vaccine

► Businesses lose revenue and lay off workers

Forbes (23.03): “Well the guidance is (beyond remain safe, look after your people first and foremost) … the discussion with each CEO is about rising to the occasion – how can he or she show leadership and step up in this difficult time, looking after employees and customers, extending product to more users, giving some product free for a transitory period, or spotting the best talent to hire that was unattainable before. We try and work with every CEO to turn this difficult time into an opportunity, resilience and lasting business value.” 

► Business investment contract and already effective corporate bankruptcies

► the power of state returns and its way is paved through fear

Financial Times (20.03): ‘The soap police

Asking people to choose between privacy and health is, in fact, the very root of the problem. Because this is a false choice. We can and should enjoy both privacy and health. We can choose to protect our health and stop the coronavirus epidemic not by instituting totalitarian surveillance regimes, but rather by empowering citizens. In recent weeks, some of the most successful efforts to contain the coronavirus epidemic were orchestrated by South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore. While these countries have made some use of tracking applications, they have relied far more on extensive testing, on honest reporting, and on the willing co-operation of a well-informed public.’ 

► Not only alone together, but together alone

Politico (19.03): ‘[We]’ve been forced to make impossible choices among [our] families, [our] health and financial ruin’

►Aviation, travel and tourism are hit the hardest. But all other industries along these 3 verticals are hit as well.

► In the best scenario we hope for a V-shape recession

… and more and more … 

What we must do at any cost

Be Antifragile

Never waste a good crisis! Find the new market equilibrium 

► Shifting first from Offense to Defence, and next from Defence to Offence

Adjust plans to the new normal, reduce costs, but seek for good investment opportunities as well!

Forbes (23.03): It’s tough to market/sell during this period and you will find that ensuring you’re in touch with customers will be important. Considering new approaches and getting user adoption in the marketplace could be helpful. One investor suggested to me that he’s urging portfolio companies to provide products for free, which a number of companies are doing – including media companies that are temporarily taking down paywalls.

Being able to deal with uncertainty and unpredictability is the strongest test of character.” 

McKinsey (03.2020): ‘What leaders need during a crisis is not a predefined response plan but behaviours and mindsets that will prevent them from overreacting to yesterday’s developments and help them look ahead.’

The Timing is ALL

Politico Magazine (19.03) surveyed more than 30 smart, macro thinkers this week, and they have some news for you: Buckle in. This could be bigger.

McKinsey (30.03): ‘The near term is essential, but don’t lose focus on the longer term (which might be worse)

Immediate and effective response is, of course, vital. We think that companies are by and large pursuing the right set of responses, as shown in Exhibit 4. But on many of these work streams, the longer-term dimensions are even more critical. Recession may set in. The disruption of the current outbreak is shifting industry structures. Credit markets may seize up, in spite of stimulus. Supply-chain resilience will be at a premium. It may sound impossible for management teams that are already working 18-hour days, but too few are dedicating the needed time and effort to responses focused on the longer term.’

Whether the lockdown continues for 2 or 4 months, it makes the difference.

Whether the corona-crisis consequences last for 6 or 9, or 12 months, it makes a huge difference.

Whether the pandemic strikes for a second, or for a third time, thus preventing the economy to recover, this will be a crucial difference!

So prepare for more than one scenario! One is for sure: things will not go on like used to be before.

► When choosing between alternatives

Financial Times (20.03): ‘When choosing between alternatives, we should ask ourselves not only how to overcome the immediate threat, but also what kind of world we will inhabit once the storm passes.

Many short-term emergency measures will become a fixture of life. That is the nature of emergencies. They fast-forward historical processes. Decisions that in normal times could take years of deliberation are passed in a matter of hours. Immature and even dangerous technologies are pressed into service, because the risks of doing nothing are bigger. The downside is, of course, that this would give legitimacy to a terrifying new surveillance system.’


‘Dust in the air is too dense now’,

Just as Menno Lamers, Founder PropTechNL said at our e-Mastermind meeting we held on 25/03. We have to wait for a while until ‘dust gets to the ground’ in order to see more clearly. This is why Scenario Planning for lockdown business people is here.

Next comes:

Cinemas are closed till real life feels like a movie, or Which trends during the corona crisis are clear?

The Corona Crisis PESTLE, or Trends we see now that will affect us in the future

Test Driving for your business, or What to do right now as soon as possible?

What to expect in the post-corona world?

The RE-gnosis, or How to bridge the gap from the future to the present?


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