Have you ever wondered what life would look like post-COVID-19? Several distinguished individuals have verbalized their opinions about COVID-19. A few include:
Roland Swenson, Co-Founder South by Southwest- “We are planning to carry on and do another event in 2021, but how we are going to do that I’m not entirely sure”.
Jon Daniels, Texas Rangers General Manager– “I think one key thing that we are trying to keep in mind is that things change day-by-day. We’re talking about something a little over two weeks from now and what are the circumstances looking like at that point?”
The uncertainty surrounding many facets of our lives is still growing a few months until the end of 2020 and possibly beyond. These disruptions generated by the COVOD-19 pandemic extends across numerous industries and disciplines.
Our sense of fashion and even the language that we use has changed as our lives have been altered drastically. The way we travel, purchase property and the level of security and surveillance that we are now seeing is not what we are accustomed to.
What most of us might be pondering about right now is how we will live our lives after the COVID-19 pandemic.
By the time this pandemic is finally over, will we go back to how things were before now? What will we call normal? Will we even want to change? Or would we have learned anything from the pandemic?
It is likely, a cure to coronavirus will be found in no distant time. Whatever the case, we know the threats of infectious disease and such outbreaks will still linger but how we responded to this pandemic has defined our lives and how we will continue to live.
Notably, this pandemic exposed some political, economic, and social dysfunctionalities as well as inefficiencies of people in leadership and its structures. It is an invitation to make radical changes to the economy, our social behavior, and the role of government in our lives.
While we are still anticipating an efficacious vaccine, the way we now relate with products and service providers will always be different.
This period has been described by many, especially Americans as synonymous to the second world war period. That said, many of the wonderful things we enjoy today were invented while the war raged or right after. Catastrophes, challenges, and limitations can be utilized as a driving force.
Not long ago, many feared losing their jobs to robots and automated systems. Today, we are no longer articulating about that fear, or at least it is not deterring us from going about our daily activities. COVID-19 may have fast-tracked remote learning and hindered physical human contact.
Many individuals, specifically those who may have lost family or friends because of the pandemic, may continue feeling helpless, lonely, and in need of support.
For some individuals, the sheer uncertainty of what tomorrow will look like, has created an increased level of unease. Based on a study conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, approximately half the population of the United States feels the pandemic is taking a toll on their mental health.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the entire earth, the perception has been that physical offices were critical to productivity. Corporations and organizations ferociously acquired prime office spaces in strategic city centers all over the globe. They focused efforts on what they regarded as key in promoting collaborations.
Technologies for digital communication, video conferencing and other forms of online collaboration have became a norm for achieving success. Some estimates show that as early as April, at least 62 percent of people in paid employment in the United States worked from home during the crisis.
Many employees enjoyed greater flexibility in balancing their personal and professional lives and have found more productive ways to spend that time because they have been liberated from long commutes and travel.
With some enterprises still shutdown for lengthy period, the economic losses are mounting. A huge loss of revenue, employment and value creation looks to continue as rounds of shutdowns and re-openings persist and may continue for a while.
Besides the obvious drop in profitability, closing businesses for a couple of months will throw up new challenges in running those businesses in the future. This can disrupt working capital, business planning and supply chains.
Life after the pandemic may be incredibly different. As governmental authorities across the world take steps to re-open, a lot of things will not be the way we used to know them.
The definition of what is necessity and what is luxury will be distinct. Brand loyalty will translate to something different. The feeling of uncertainty, fear and anxiety will impact consumer’s buying behavior.
The ability of brands to command a premium pricing will no longer stand as price will become the primary driver in decision making. The quest for many businesses will be dominant in the decisions they make. Some will even become desperate and would adopt reckless approaches to keep their business afloat.
Today, because of globalization businesses are connected and highly inter-dependent. For example, if a vendor fails to supply one component due to constraint, it can have a dire effect on the overall supply chain value stream.
It is of extreme importance that this health crisis must be halted, however businesses should plan for life after the pandemic. We all agree that the challenges are enormous, but businesses cannot afford to stall on this. The first thing is to acknowledge and accept the predicament we are in and plan for it.
In a nutshell, although no-one knows precisely what the future would look like, a preponderant number of people have acknowledged it will never be the same.
Ashley Kirzinger, A. K. (2020, April 2). KFF. Retrieved from KFF Health Tracking Poll – Early April 2020: The Impact Of Coronavirus On Life In America: https://www.kff.org/health-reform/report/kff-health-tracking-poll-early-april-2020/
DeRose Meditiation . (2020, September 14). Retrieved from DeRose Meditiation : https://www.derosemeditation.com/
Gourani, S. (2020, May 15). The Art Of Thriving In Turbulent Times. Retrieved from Forbes: https://www.forbes.com/sites/soulaimagourani/2020/05/15/the-art-of-thriving-in-turbulent-times/#507028362668
Souder, E. (2020, March 14). The most there’s-no-crying-in-baseball coronavirus quotes of the week. Retrieved from The Dallas Morning News: https://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/commentary/2020/03/14/the-most-theres-no-crying-in-baseball-coronavirus-quotes-of-the-week/
Vries, M. F. (2018). Down the Rabbit Hole of Leadership: Leadership Pathology of Everyday Life. Palgrave Macmillan.