The OX and our resilience

Published February 16, 2021, 12:30 AM

by John Tria


John Tria
John Tria

The ox, a strong, persevering, and hardworking animal, bears  qualities that will be needed for recovery. The ox gets thing done no matter the adversity, and thus inspires us to move forward and recover.

In many previous articles we talked about developing our “new normal” strategies for the year – where to focus and what products and services to push, markets to tap, and adjustments made.

Quite a number of companies are slowly but surely getting their plans in place. Some have made adjustments and innovations, such as a focus on renewable energy, a more aggressive online marketing plan, new products to meet emerging needs, and a higher presence in the markets deemed more sustainable.

Others have strengthened their logistics and distribution capability. Others are planning an expansion outside of Metro Manila and are looking at the Visayas and Mindanao to locate businesses to meet the demands of the local market.

As the lunar new year is upon us, we transition to the Year of the Ox, we now take up the challenge of patiently executing our plans and visions for the new normal, and constantly evaluating the effectiveness of these plans and how they are executed. We explore certain elements that will allow us to be resilient.

Business Continuity Planning is essential

Apart from the usual plans we make, the need to put business continuity plans (BCPs) in place to deal with disruptions which can include health issues, and climate-related challenges, including the possibility of natural disasters. The goal of such a plan is to get our businesses up and running as soon as possible after the event, to keep jobs and livelihoods strong.

With the earthquakes that have been felt in Mindanao and just recently, Japan all remind us of this essential task.

Invest in training  

A recent survey worth looking into for entrepreneurs is the Michael Page Survey that reports that 80% of Filipino firms surveyed indicate that they will likely retain or expand their hiring in 2021. Read more here:

With a variety of firms innovating in the new normal and possibly expanding , the need to train for new skills will be important.

Suggestions to build resilient communities

It appears that a growing number of urban residents all over the country, even in the Visayas and Mindanao, are living in condominium complexes, especially mid-rise blocks that incorporate landscaped portions. This is apart from those already living in subdivisions and residential blocks.

A good idea for developers, homeowners associations, and condominium corporations is to repurpose some of the spaces in these developments into vegetable gardens to supply a portion of the food needs of residents.

Vertical properties can also develop hydroponic systems that can grow vegetables.

Another suggestion is to compost organic and food waste to use for planting. This allows the community to reduce its waste.With new technologies being practiced and shared, i believe a greater portion of our future food needs will be self-grown.

DBPs infusion

The recent P12.5-B capital infusion into the Development Bank of the Philippines will help support the recovery of businesses in accordance with Bayanihan 2 through loan financing.This will be allocated to support various institutions such as hospitals, MSMEs, schools, and transport cooperatives.

This is apart from additional Bayanihan 2 support for the the Small Business Corporation’s loan programs for MSMEs and the Landbank’s assistance to agribased enterprises.

Continue to stay safe and patronize local products!

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