Leaders’ Summit insights

What were the main messages to come out of the 2020 Leaders’ Summit? Below is a short round-up of the event for you to read and put into practice.


Key takeaways

Concentrate on climate change. “It’s got to be on everyone’s agenda – all day and every day.”

Learn lessons from Covid-19. The risk of a global infectious disease was listed as the tenth most important risk in terms of impact on the World Economic Forum’s Risk Index 2020 (compiled before the coronavirus pandemic began). Learn lessons for managing this risk in future – it will happen again.

Ask questions about data privacy. Do your staff know they are being monitored? Who is doing the monitoring? What are they monitoring and why? Who can access the data? Where and how is it held and for how long?

Recognise and manage new challenges for staff welfare. Increasing automation means that more employees can now work from home or on the move – and the coronavirus crisis has made home-working business as usual. How is your company managing mental health and wellbeing issues, especially at a time of anxiety and isolation?

Get your point across. Effective communications protect reputations and help you win friends and influence people. It’s not enough to be right, if no one acts on your advice. Embed the following top tips in your communications strategy:

  • Less is more – focus on a key message and stick to it.
  • Simple, quick and accurate – pare the message down, ensure it reaches its audience while it is most relevant and get it right the first time.

Practise for crises. Know your enemies. Does everyone understand their role in a crisis? Train people and test their reactions – repeatedly. Where are the plans and who can access them? How often are they updated and tested? Learn from the tests. And practise crisis communications. Who talks to the press? Do they have resilience statements? Have they been trained? For a podcast on crisis planning, head over to our Audit Leaders site.

Content reviewed: 1 April 2020