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Business Article

Understanding The New Normal


The term “New Normal” sounds interesting to the ear YET poses a lot of questions to the mind. COVID-19 has forced the entire world to adjust for both survival and continuity reasons. The Coronavirus is something we must learn to work around until we either get a vaccine or overcome naturally by changing our behaviours.

There is no going back to what used to be or avoiding the effects of COVID-19, we only have two choices; to cope and to thrive. Here are some useful things every business needs to know as we define the New Normal which shall differ for so many of us:

The Threat is Real: We should not put our guard down when it comes to fighting the virus. The fear of COVID-19 may be slowly dying out especially as life gradually begins to return to normal however, at no moment should we relax social distancing if we are going to reduce the spread of the disease. Let us be vigilant about protecting ourselves, families and businesses by following the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) at all times.

Working from Home: Shifting your business operations home sounds rational but how effective are you while working from home? Most of our homes aren’t quite built to serve a dual function in terms of space and the necessary equipment required to operate optimally e.g. the Internet, computers, etc. The key questions to ask yourself before asking your staff to work from home are:

  1. Who is going to provide the digital tools i.e. phone, laptop, internet, etc.?
  2. How are you going to supervise the staff when it comes to delivery?
  3. How do you cater for power blackouts and poor internet connectivity?
  4. How do you ensure information security, confidentiality and data privacy?

Instilling a New Work Culture: We are so accustomed to working face to face i.e. holding meetings, collaborating tasks, sharing roles, delivering work, etc. Changing from that default to working remotely is something that requires on boarding and incentivizing for it to be meaningful and productive. There is a lot of work that must be done for staff and clients to embrace the culture of working remotely.

Changing Times: As businesses, we must accept that things have changed, clients’ needs, interests and priorities have been altered by the ongoing pandemic. To remain relevant and profitable, we must rethink our various value prepositions. We must also tweak our prices, practices and policies without compromising our values and quality. Challenges often bring about new opportunities to pursue therefore, we should always position ourselves strategically and behave proactively.

The Reality: Quitting isn’t the answer and going silent isn’t a solution either, we should square off i.e. face the current situation head on. There is life after COVID-19 and our emphasis should be on building tough skin to thrive during these grim times. The key questions every business should be asking themselves are:

  1. How do I help my staff and clients cope during these unprecedented times?
  2. Where will I be when this is over?
  3. How am I going to end 2020?
  4. How am I going to begin 2021?
  5. What lessons has the ongoing pandemic taught me?
  6. What counter measures have I put in place to safeguard (cushion) my business against similar threats in the future?
  7. Who can I learn from and ally (partner) with?

Conclusion: Survival is for the fittest, in such an environment where uncertainty is the order of the day, we must be very practical, flexible and open minded. We must be attentive and pay attention to what the market is saying. We need each other to thrive in the New Normal, this is an opportune moment to build lasting bonds with the people we do business with. For any comments, feedback and advice, send me a message through the form below.

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