Although organisations and individuals are going through extremely difficult times right now, there are positive trends emerging from the Covid-19 pandemic. Our member in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean, CTI Consulting Group CEO Viviane Fortuno, has identified 5 trends and states:
‘‘We must recognise the powerful lessons and tools for the future. These can be applied to develop a mind-set that sees barriers as challenges that can be overcome – inciting innovation and adaptability. Due to the extreme nature of the coronavirus pandemic, social distancing has become the new normal. This has pushed employers to rely on remote work as a necessary alternative. It is no longer just about a business strategy, but rather, business continuity and safeguarding employee’s well-being and health.”
Some positive trends emerging from the Covid-19 global pandemic:
The future of telecommuting could allow greater work flexibility across the world
The term telecommuting is the agreement of employees carrying out their job responsibilities when and where they want. There are many advantages of telecommuting such as increasing productivity and employee retention. Furthermore, employees who telecommute have less sickness absence and increased employee satisfaction levels. Employers also save running costs on office space and utilities. It also provides employees with a better work/life balance.
Expanding telecommuting, or some form of it, has been unavoidable for many businesses over the past month, but it can be win-win for employees and employers as long as there are strong policies and technological support in place.
Businesses must be digitally transformed
Many businesses will be transforming the delivery of their services to adapt to the current circumstances. This will push many businesses into the modern world of digital servicing.
Updating to online delivery, where possible, could help businesses reach new customers and audiences, and be the difference between businesses surviving, or not surviving in 2020.
Telework improves employee quality of life
More than 1/3 of the world are now in some sort of lockdown [as of 1st April 2020] with restricted access to the outdoors and limited social freedoms. However, let’s fast forward to a post-lockdown world where restrictions are lifted and life has returned to ‘the new normal’. We may see many employers and employees still embarking on the recent working solutions. Let’s look at one example, commuting. Commuting to work can be very time consuming, and may involve crowded trains or traffic jams, heightening stress levels. Increasing your employee’s leisure time by reducing their commute could increase the quality of their lives immensely.
True Leadership is evidenced in this crisis
A global crisis has hit. Interestingly, it can take a crisis for humans to true personalities and skills to come through. For instance, you may have a senior manager who has gone above and beyond supporting their team to transition into remote workers. On the other hand, you may have a senior manager who has not grasped the new way of working and has instead retreated into their shell and left their team to work out everything for themselves. Emotions can easily control us and being defeatist in this time is not a helpful trait in management. True and natural leadership will be revealed during a crisis and identifying this is extremely useful to businesses.
Isolation awakens creativity
We have all spent time in a noisy office attempting to complete a task, but struggled with the interruptions of music or visitors, phones ringing or constant movement around us. Being forced into isolation may awaken employee’s (and let’s not forget employers and entrepreneur’s) creative sides. Removing distractions and enabling an employee to work in an environment in which they control, may produce incredible results.
Businesses can use this time to nurture the positive trends emerging and discover new ways in which their employee experience can be enhanced both throughout this period of uncertainty and beyond.