What do you feel when you see the image above? I feel suffocated and nauseated.
The world is six months into a Global Pandemic and all ways of life (and business) are holding on until when this will “be over”. But, even if it all does end, can the way of life be ever the same?
Here are some changes that are bound to happen, in my opinon, to keep the world running:
The People – Cornerstone of any Business
When countries were plunged into lock-down so their healthcare system won’t crash, few unlikely heroes rose above the rest. Apart from the medical staff, these are the housekeepers, drivers, delivery guys, mail carriers, you name them. It didn’t matter what status they held or where they worked at, the thing that united them was that they were at the forefront of this pandemic.
Rethinking Health Plans
In a capitalist economy, all workers become an ongoing expense in a ledger and all customers are potential sources of profit. During the pandemic it became clear that business are run BY the people, and their health and well-being matter.
Social Distancing as a Part of Daily Life
I personally can’t imagine a crowded subway stations or packed diners, like it used to be, nor will I be comfortable sitting in them any longer. Even if they become that congested, can we really ignore the fact that the infection still lingers around us and hygiene standards needs to be increased, including wearing masks in public places.
As flexible working hours and work-from-home become the reasonable method for businesses to continue operations, does it really help the work-life balance? Speaking from my experience, we tend to devote more time towards work when working from home. The strict 9-to-5 time barrier and in-office attendance has diminished. This indirectly leads to employees working at odd hours to meet the deadlines, in addition to the chores and other house tasks each is occupied with, including homeschooling since education has gone digital as well.
The Technology – Core of any Business
We are in the digital age and this pandemic only helped boost it up. How would we have ordered food or restaurants efficiently and timely delivered it – had it not been for all the food delivery apps. Or even catching up with friends and family during quarantine – had it not been for fast and free video conferencing apps.
E-Commerce and the Last-Mile Shipping
The whole world quarantined, with no other option to ‘have it online’, businesses were rushing to meet the demand on their website/app only to realize that they had not enough drivers to deliver. For those businesses who weren’t even operations on the net – well they came to the dire realization themselves – evolve and adapt, or be washed offshore. Companies should be diverting their attention on digitization of their products/services and investing into efficient last-mile delivery options.
Innovation and Automation
Both innovation and automation need a driving force to take place, which this pandemic provided. Past methods of working no longer hold true. Large companies and small business alike are getting their gears into action and developing new policies, metrics and of course processes to withstand the curve-ball that COVID19 has brought along, though the latter are hit worse due to budgetary restrictions.
Education and Healthcare
Telemedicine and virtual learning soared during the lock-down. Schools, universities, clinics and hospitals around the world adopted e-platforms and brought along their community, the old and the young, to acquire the knowledge and to provide the services while staying at home. Can the reach be expanded beyond borders, reducing the need of brick-and-mortar intuitions to provide the essentials to any society?
This is hardly a conclusive list of changes. No one knows how the world post-pandemic will look like. We still don’t know how long this will last, but we know we are in this together. Let me know what you think and Stay Safe!
Photo via Unsplash