By Yodfat Harel Buchris, managing director, Blumberg Capital
When looking back at the first couple of weeks after ‘stay at home’ orders went into place around the world due to COVID-19 – hectic doesn’t even begin to describe it.
At home in Tel Aviv with my husband and children, the first thing we did to cope with the new reality of remote work, was increase streaming capacity so that everyone could be online at the same time. (Especially since I was starting my meetings at 9am every morning and continued well beyond the end of business hours!) My priority at that time was to meet often with the leadership at our investment portfolio companies, including HR managers to ensure that remote work was ‘working’ and that they were also able to continue business as usual.
Then, a couple of weeks in, amidst the chaos, what once felt like an emergency became routine. Our team had started to implement practices that we realized were extremely valuable: intentionally creating more balance between work and family, respecting other’s needs and schedules (Zoom starts and ends at a specific time), working dynamically together in a virtual space and making time to celebrate our successes with firm-wide Friday night toasts.
Another positive change that has come out of this challenging time is the increase in due diligence and attention to detail. We’re spending much more time with potential portfolio companies on Zoom calls, getting to know them and their business on a deeper level. As a result, we have invested in five new companies during this time, proving that the world is continuing to evolve and that investors should always keep an eye on the innovative and promising businesses of the future.
In this ‘new normal’, creativity and teamwork are paramount. The box on Zoom is the same size for the CEO as it is for any other employee. I’m reminded of a quote from Henry Ford that encapsulates this: “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” Either we survive as a team or not at all.
I recently joined Bryan Cave Leighton Partners for a virtual Zoom discussion on this topic. Watch the video here: https://bclplaw.wistia.com/medias/8y5u4uo52o