The Washington Post

Mediocre Vaccine Rollout May Delay Recovery

A recent BCG report indicates that significant work remains to get through the pandemic. BCG’s CEO, Rich Lesser, tells The Washington Post that Americans, in particular, should expect another full year of “suspended new normal.” The report indicates that the most likely scenario for the US is a “good-but-not-great rollout” of a vaccine, which would delay defeating the pandemic until the first quarter of 2022. An even longer setback is possible due to less effective trials and delayed authorization and distribution of the vaccines. “I expect a year from now there will be a lot of reasons to be optimistic, and we'll go into next winter feeling very different than we’re going into this winter,” says Lesser.

CNBC

How to Encourage Corporate Diversity Efforts

BCG’s Joe Davis speaks to CNBC on achieving racial equity in the workplace. He outlines BCG’s work with Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) to develop a first-of-its-kind certification, “MLT Black Equity at Work,” which creates clear and comprehensive standards for employers to achieve Black equity in the workplace. He states that research consistently shows diverse teams lead to more innovative and impactful answers at work. Davis believes that to be a truly equitable company, companies need to foster an inclusive culture where business practices work to eliminate systemic bias and give back to society.

Forbes

The Future of Work: Don’t Wait for a Vaccine to Get on the Same Page

In the first article for her new regular column in Forbes, BCG’s Debbie Lovich writes that companies should not wait for a COVID-19 vaccine to reimagine how, when, and where people work. She believes that companies can start now by considering what customers and employees want and need, what technology can and can’t bring to organizations, and where to find great talent. Lovich emphasizes that “we have an opportunity to shape the new model of working with experimentation and data; let’s take advantage of it.”

Fortune

Why It's So Hard to See ROI from AI

Only 10% of companies report significant financial benefits from their AI investments, according to a recent report by MIT and BCG. BCG’s Shervin Khodabandeh tells Fortune and Forbes that firms need to undertake extensive structural changes and rethink how they integrate tech into their businesses for AI success. He explains that too many companies draw a false analogy between their adoption of AI and another technology that had a large impact on their business processes: enterprise resource planning. However, Khodabandeh says it is promising that 10% of companies have seen large gains from AI even without generalized and standardized AI processes.

Forbes

Working Remotely: Don’t Forget Boundaries

Today’s homebound workers often struggle to find clear boundaries when it comes to work-life balance, BCG’s Grant Freeland writes for Forbes. He says that working from home creates an atmosphere without a clear start and end to the workday. Freeland believes that although employee preferences for hybrid work indicate that remote work will continue after the pandemic, businesses need to help establish boundaries so their employees don’t feel pressured to consider “all day, all night” work to be the new reality.

Forbes

Humanitarian and Resilience Investing

Immediate action is needed to help vulnerable communities overcome the pandemic and prevent the reversal of decades of progress. So says BCG’s Wendy Woods—along with her coauthors, WEF Humanitarian and Resilience Impact Investing initiative cochairs—in an article for Forbes. This emerging initiative leverages private capital to benefit at-risk communities by investing in local resilience efforts and markets. The initiative will work during the next 12 months to accelerate the development of this market in three core areas: building resilience across public health systems, strengthening donors to catalyze private investments, and helping investors understand the deal and portfolio structures that are viable in fragile contexts.

Gulf News

Women and Wealth: It’s Time for a Customized Approach

In an article for Gulf News, BCG’s Mustafa Bosca writes that although women’s wealth will contribute significantly to the Middle East’s overall affluence in the coming years, the wealth management community has not fully realized this $786 billion opportunity. He believes that the Middle East needs to take significant steps toward promoting gender equality and encouraging social inclusion to eliminate biases against women that hinder wealth management opportunities. Bosca says it is time to help women meet their financial objectives and realize their potential.

Forbes

Great Leaders Realize They Don’t Even Know What They Don’t Know

The pandemic has caused leaders to rethink how they build sustainable business advantage in a world where great is no longer good enough, according to BCG’s Grant Freeland in an article for Forbes. He states that the “holy grail of successful leadership” is acknowledging how much you do not know and seeking help. Thus, Freeland mines advice from BCG’s Arindam Bhattacharya, Nikolaus Lang, and Jim Hemerling, who tap into the wisdom of some of the most accomplished business leaders in their new book, Beyond Great. The authors explain that leaders must “steer their organizations to learn, rethink, and experiment” to succeed in the 21st century.

Forbes

A Personal Plea for Leaders to Help Parents, Especially Women, Juggle COVID, Family, and Careers

COVID-19 and school closings have forced working parents to reorder their priorities, BCG’s Grant Freeland writes for Forbes. BCG research has found that up to 15% of working parents are considering leaving their jobs due to the pandemic. Freeland emphasizes that company leaders must help their employees get through difficult times and suggests that they can achieve this by embracing flex-work, providing positive feedback and reinforcement, and considering subsidizing childcare. He says that leaders who do not proactively develop a caregiver strategy will lose not only their hard-won progress on gender diversity, but “may also lose some of [their] most valuable employees and future company leaders.”

Khaleej Times

Resurging Tech Companies Supply and Demand in the Midst of COVID-19

As uncertainties persist due to the ongoing pandemic and economic volatility, companies need to increasingly take steps to ensure their continuity, BCG’s David Panhans writes in the Khaleej Times. He asserts that tech companies have a responsibility to ensure that governments remain responsive, businesses continue to be operational, and individuals stay connected. He explains that doing so requires companies to guarantee production stability and adapt to shifting demand. “The onus is on tech companies to continue acting swiftly and decisively,” Panhans says.

Forbes

Will the 3+2 “Hybrid” Workplace of Home and Office Become the New Norm for Business

According to a recent BCG survey, 60% of people who currently work remotely would like the flexibility regarding when and where they work to continue after the pandemic. In his recent Forbes column, BCG’s Grant Freeland writes that COVID-19 seems to have solidified the already growing flex-work trend and changed the nature of work forever. He says, “we have an exciting opportunity to reimagine work around the new remote reality.”

Firstpost

Building a More Equitable Education System in India

BCG’s Seema Bansal tells Firstpost that the pandemic has exposed structural weaknesses in India’s education system. She points out that only 8% to 10% of schoolchildren use digital learning systems, which reveals the ongoing digital divide in education. Bansal asserts that digital access and community networks must play a key role in building a more equitable education system for all Indian students in the post-COVID-19 world.

Financial Times

Second-Hand Luxury Reshapes the Industry

In the Financial Times, BCG’s Sarah Willersdorf discusses how the pandemic has accelerated growth in the second-hand luxury market. She states that the second-hand luxury market is experiencing a boost as the current economic cycle has reduced discretionary spending and driven a general shift in consumer sentiment. “People want to get the most for their money, and there is also a sustainability angle that is especially appealing to younger consumers,” Willersdorf explains.

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