UnleashWD: Consider the Human and Relational Capital Issues During the Coronavirus Pandemic

BY Syretta Williams
3/19/2020 - COVID-19

In an effort to continue to try and provide our members with resources that are easy to consume, and relevant to their own businesses, we are taking some information that has been developed and trying to “pare it down” as much as possible so you can easily find the identified portions that are most beneficial.

One resource that has been created in the wake of the COVID-19 virus is a video series developed by Dirk Beveridge from UnleashWD. In this particular video, “Consider the Human and Relational Capital Issues During the Coronavirus Pandemic”, Dirk interviews Dr. Dana Wells from Dana Wells & Associates, a PhD in Human Capital Management and 30 years of experience helping organizations adapt to market disruptions.

We have taken some time to pull some of the highlights and identify some important items that were covered, and then time stamp the video for easy access to everything that was covered in the video.



During the video, Dirk interviews Dr. Wells to get her thoughts around three key points, Structural, Human and Relational Capital.

The video begins by explaining how companies are now in a position where they must make digital transformations and transition their operational models in real time during this pandemic. By using technology as their “enabler” while allowing their employees to work remotely. Leaders’ thinking, behaviors and how they operate will need to be different in how they operate day to day business.

Dirk and Dr. Wells discuss how leaders can take care of business operations, their employees and their communities by leveraging technology, changing their thinking and increasing their communication and visibility during this uncertain time of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please watch the video to gain some valuable insights and practical tactics and strategies to implement throughout a distribution organization as it relates to structural, human and relational capital.

Video Timestamps:

5:12 – Introduction of Dr. Dana Wells

6:56 – Dr. Wells explains the digital transformation that businesses are undergoing as a result of the pandemic

8:42 – Dr. Wells responds to the question asked around the future of work today:  As a leader prepares to change their mindset, how should the leader be thinking about the business operating model changing in real time and what kinds of questions should the leader be considering during this time.

10:27 – Dirk and Dr. Wells clarify the need to think about the need for change in their organizational design and what role technology can play to help employees continue their day to day activities

11:11 – Dr. Wells responds to the question asked around: As the organizational design changes and more technology is implemented, how can the workforce continue to be engaged and understanding the human capital aspect of it.

She provides good tactics on using an organizations disaster recovery plans and providing access to employees to have the ability to work remote as well as mitigating risk during the process and what guidelines to follow for those who cannot work from home

12:46 – Dr. Wells explains the importance of putting together a cross functional taskforce within your organization to help mitigate the risks and what the agenda of what the first meeting should likely include to ensure the taskforce is value added to the organization.

16:07 – Dirk asks Dr. Wells to explain when the leader is figuring out the state of the organization and community, if that should be formulated by the leader to be co-created by the taskforce to strategize around

18:22 – Dr. Wells provides a framework example of what the top-level communication should be to organization and what some of the key messages or communication commitments that should be regardless of business types. 

She further provides various methods on how to get these authentic messages out to employees to help keep them engaged and focused.

21:20 – Dr. Wells advises what leaders should be asking of their employees who are working remotely, how communications should be cascaded to teams to make sure that company goals and objectives are met and how to conduct themselves when working in virtual environments

24:15 – Closing the interview, Dirk asks Dr. Wells to explain how businesses can engage customers and continue to invest in relational capital.  She outlines how leaders can express their commitment to serving and communicating with their customers and their communities.

27:08 – Dr. Wells shares her final thoughts as it relates to change management and what are some of the best recommendations for leaders to follow in this dynamically changing time where there are many unknowns, she highlights the importance of high communication and visibility as well as the best way to execute these tactics.

About UnleasedWD's video series

At UnleashWD our purpose is to unleash the human spirit.  And during this unprecedented time we felt compelled to support the UnleashWD tribe and our association partners with the right mix of inspiration and timely, relevant information.  We reached out to our network of wickedly smart subject matter experts to provide the sessions below.  In the words of one attendee - “This was amazing.  You’ve changed our day tomorrow.  We’ll be on the attack!”

We are a design, innovation, and strategy firm who transforms legacy distributors into nimble and innovative market leaders.  What you are about to experience is designed to unleash your spirit so like the individual above decided, you too will be on the attack!

We are here to support you through these next few months and beyond.  If we can do anything for you please reach out directly to either of us.

Dirk Beveridge                      Bethany Hepler
Founder                                VP of Design
dirk@unleashwd.com           bethany@unleashwd.com