Devadas Krishnadas, Founder and CEO of Future-Moves Group (FMG) tells us how the strategy and management consulting firm is focusing on public policy.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Devadas Krishnadas: All good, thank you.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Future-Moves Group.
Devadas Krishnadas: 9 years ago, I set up FMG with the lofty ambition of becoming Asia’s premier management and strategy consulting company with a focus on public policy. As we enter our 9th anniversary month in April 2021, I am pleased to observe how far we have come on the road towards that goal. We long ago graduated from start-up status and now sit comfortably at the top table with decision-makers in the public and private sectors.
How does Future-Moves Group innovate?
Devadas Krishnadas: As a services-based rather than a product-based company, our innovation comes in our people – who we recruit, how we shape the team, the culture we develop and the service commitment we bring our clients. Every project we work on – and they always come on a large scale with high stakes – requires creative and innovative thinking from our highly skilled team as we chart new paths ahead for our clients years into the future. Whether it’s a corporate strategy visioning exercise, a whole-of-government transformation project, or restructuring an NPO, we have to constantly be innovative in our thinking and execution.
How has the coronavirus pandemic affected your business finances?
Devadas Krishnadas: We were in a fortunate position to have had a pipeline of international business that helped see us through the worst of the crisis in 2020. While I cannot say we were not unaffected, I can thankfully say we remain in a strong and healthy position.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources, and what are the lessons learned?
Devadas Krishnadas: Linked to my previous answer, we were in the pleasing and unusual position of seeing our team grow in numbers over the past year, not decrease, so I am grateful no difficult HR decisions needed to be made.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Devadas Krishnadas: Like everyone else, when the world was on lockdown, we came to rely a lot on digital conferencing tools, but this was something we had been doing already due to our international business. At our HQ in Singapore, we have three office spaces fully equipped with large-screen digital TVs, microphones, cameras, and everything else needed to help us deliver our services as efficiently as we did in pre-Covid times.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Devadas Krishnadas: Singapore pushed out five of what I would consider’ emergency budgets’ during 2020, which have broadly achieved their goals in supporting Singaporean businesses and workers during Covid-19. FMG was grateful to avail of some wage subsidies for our staff for several months in mid-2020, but other than that, we are proud and happy to be able to stand on our own feet as we emerge stronger from Covid-19.
Your final thoughts?
Devadas Krishnadas: One must always look at challenges as an opportunity to learn and grow. As alluded to in several of my prior answers, FMG is now a bigger, better and stronger company than it was in 2019 before the virus struck. The world is different now, and there is no such thing as ‘going back to normal. All organizations around the world – whether established companies or recent start-ups – must be prepared to make big adaptations to prepare themselves for what lies ahead. Indeed, they may find points of interest in my book Confronting Covid-19: A Strategic Playbook for Leaders and Decision Makers!
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