Just in Time or Just in Case
The Covid-19 crisis calls for re-balancing priorities.
The current crisis has thrown everyone out of gear and all the plans of mice and men have gone awry. For long the industries in the world over were driven by the Japanese principle of Just in Time, efficiency was the buzz-word and we were connected with anytime, anywhere technology wherein The People’s Republic of China was the supplier of cheap goods to the world market. Today we face a different challenge where commercial markets have been ruined and most of the manufacturers are sitting on their goods, farmers are sitting on their produce and economies have come to a standstill. This naturally forces us to re-examine the older precepts of either JIT or efficiency.
The earlier models of industry were driven by the idea of increasing the profit by boosting demands and making the supplies Just in Time, yet in order to withstand the current crises we need to arrive at simpler models where one size may not fit all, there is an urgent need to rebalance the priorities.
Followings can be some components of a “Just in Case”.
Simplifying will allow the businesses to focus on adaption of changing dynamics. By simplifying, they can sharpen their focus on the products that matter most to clients. They can also simultaneously outsource activities that aren’t core to their business, so management’s time and attention can be devoted to activity that supports business continuity.
Businesses need to look for partners who have skills, tools and knowledge that will maximize the business potential and minimize the risk.
Now it is even more important to produce closer to the selling market, for the risk in shipping and transportation can be high. It’s also important to touch the customer directly and get his feedback for creating a due alteration in the products.
To reduce risk, it’s important to build Plan Bs. Disruption in any shape and size can occur in any of the enterprise or business. Sticking to the same idea or plans may not be a very fruitful idea.
Adopt the change, trying something new, has little risk involved in a high-risk environment like todays. Adopting new technology or ideas like work from home have all emerged due to the current crises. It’s, therefore, an opportune moment to test our skills or try a new idea thus turning threats into opportunity.
However, ‘patience’ may have to replace ‘efficiency’ as the buzz-word if we are looking at ‘Just in Case’.