Business Beyond COVID-19 – The Global Podcast Series

Welcome to Business Beyond COVID-19, HSBC’s podcast series about embracing business unusual through the global pandemic and beyond. We talk to industry leaders and experts to understand how they are adapting, reshaping and innovating through these extraordinary times.


HSBC hosted a virtual round-table in June with senior business leaders from Asia to explore how COVID-19 had affected their businesses, staff, customer needs and supply chains - and how they had responded to these changes, both immediately and in the longer term. They share their lessons from the pandemic, and their predictions for the ‘new normal’.



Listening time 13min

Download recording transcript

Key takeaways for business leaders in order to navigate COVID-19 related challenges successfully:

  • Reinforcing the connection between employee and employer pays major dividends
  • Practical steps are needed to achieve this
  • Examples include regular wellbeing checks and protective equipment

  • Regular and frequent communication with staff, customers and suppliers is essential
  • This delivers an invaluable measure of certainty in challenging conditions, which is the real underlying priority for many individuals
  • Make the most of online communication tools, which may well become part of the new normal

  • Resilience is essential
  • The possible additional cost to achieve this is worth paying in order to minimise risk
  • Flexibility is similarly vital when the corporate business model may have to be changed extremely quickly

  • Get a fast and firm grip on your cash position
  • Re-examine inventory priorities quickly and frequently in the light of shifting demand across channels
  • Cut inventory where necessary, but bear in mind the impact on suppliers, particularly important but less well-capitalised ones


Please don’t get stuck in analysis paralysis. Come up with the best credible plan that you’ve got.

John O’Brien, CFO of Fossil Group for Asia Pacific


I think that looking at the supply chain resilience is something that it will be prudent by all to do.

Nikolaj Enevoldsen, Regional CFO of Hempel for North Asia


Definitely the best investment we can do during this crisis is to reinforce the link between the employee and employer.

Jean-Philippe Poulin, President of Lesaffre for Greater China