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Seven pieces of wisdom from a global conversation

For Earth Day 2020 we decided to gather together the chairs from our regional boards around the world, to discuss the impact COVID-19 has had, and will continue to have, on business and the climate crisis.


Now is a great time to leapfrog direct to consumer businesses – to reach people at home. Alibaba became a consumer brand during SARS. Now is the time for the craziest ideas, now is the time to go for it.
Ed Bell, Cathay Pacific
(Hong Kong)

We are seeing an acceleration of trends already happening (direct to consumer, digital adoption). There will a shakeout, and a renewed focus on purpose. Visualise your world after covid-19. Empower others to dream.
Margaret Molloy, Siegel+Gale
(New York)

Consumers are going to reward people that speak plainly to them and share a degree of empathy with them. Smooth seas don’t make skilful sailors, so reflect on what we’re learning going through this crisis.
Dom Grounsell, GVC Group
(London)

This type of crisis will probably come back again. Anyone who manages and leads through a crisis will develop a skillset that will toughen you up for things to come. Make sure you take care of yourself and the mental wellbeing of your team. Have boundaries, don’t work 24/7.
Erica Kerner, ONE Championship
(Singapore)

This is the moment we need to stop thinking like a marketer and think like an owner. Be kind to yourself. Relax, don’t be too hard on yourself during a pandemic.
Virginia Sharma, LinkedIn
(New Delhi)

Only brands with purpose will survive. Never before has relevance been so important and tech is going to transform the way we all operate. In terms of tips, I would encourage everyone to think about their own professional relevance during this time and how they can improve it.
Fiona Burton, The Leith Agency
(Edinburgh)

I think this use of tech will open up new avenues that we haven’t seen before. A lot of people will see a new innovation and think, ‘Why didn’t I think of that?
Khaled Ismail, Tetra Pak
(Dubai)