VIA BEETCAM — When Rishad Tobaccowala decided to write a book on rebalancing business, he didn’t think it would landing in the middle of a global pandemic that threatens to up-end business and reboot the world as we know it.

But that’s what is happening.

The senior advisor of media agency holding group Publicis, an ad industry veteran, has complained that too many businesses have followed the path of math.

In Restoring The Soul Of Business, which was published by HarperCollins in January 2020, he calls on businesses to address the “heart” of consumers.

In this recorded interview with Beet.TV, Tobaccowala talks about the three profound effects coronavirus will have, predicting “a time of amazing anxiety”:

  1. “(It is as) if 9/11 met the 2008-2009 crisis and they had a child. It’s much more than a one-time systematic shock. It’s much more than financial. It’s a broader and deeper thing than anything that has gone before.”
  2. “It is like an asteroid has hit the Earth and the Earth went on after the asteroids hit – but one of the things the asteroids did take out were dinosaurs. There’ll be certain business models, certain businesses, certain organisations that will never come back.”
  3. “When you basically close down the global world economy in stages … you don’t restart it without people having different mindsets. It’s like someone has th
  4. wacked you in the head.”

In the new world, he says, businesspeople are going to have to “lead with soul”, a topic his book breaks down in to five traits:

  1. Capability. Show that you are capable even if you are working at home with limited stuff to actually do your job.”
  2. Integrity. Like never before, people have to trust you, trust your word because often you’re going to basically tell people in uncertain times.”
  3. Empathy. Not only understanding your ultimate client, but understanding your employees and anybody you’re working with.”
  4. Vulnerability. It’s very, very important to recognize and know that you yourself are concerned about the future and what will happen to not only the world, but your business and your firm.”
  5. Inspiration. This, too, will end. All of us have been given 12 weeks to reconsider life, to reconsider ourselves, to reconsider our families; that’s really positive.”

Tobaccowala was interviewed remotely at home by BeetCam.