A New Set of Skills
While emotional about all the events around the Corona Virus alarm, we might see only negative. And hey, I am the most dramatic and emotional person ever, so I am like that too. However, many interesting facts keep coming to my mind as well.
We are developing a set of new skills – the hard way, but we are. Even the normally gloomy Economist writes it: Covid 19 is foisting changing on business that could be beneficial, and gives an example:
In february 2014 a strike on the London Underground offered management theorists a lesson in resilience and adaptation. Because the shutdown closed some but not all Tube lines, frustrated Londoners were forced to rethink their commutes to and from work. Researchers at Oxford and Cambridge universities subsequently found that around 5% of passengers stuck to their new itineraries even after normal service resumed. The long-term economic gains of one in 20 travellers adopting new and improved ways to get to work turned out to be greater than the short-term costs of the disruption.
Another outbreak or virus will happen, in the future, and we will be much better prepared.
The Cloud that Disappeared
There are more fields the virus is having an effect on.
In a phase where climate change and the way we addressed it were becoming more and more a problem, many countries, including China, had to stop. I am sure you have seen the photo showing how China’s pollution dropped dramatically, after its lockdown. With a mask…one could breath again.
And think about this: we were (and are) also used to consumerism, to long, hectic days, nonstop working, continuous traveling, constant performing. Now we have to stay home and have more time on our hands.
How about kids? As a society, we got used to other people taking care of them: staff, kindergarten, teachers, au pairs, and so on. Now we need to watch them ourselves.
We went on and on about foreigns: how to keep them away, how they were bad, criminal, ill, scared for no reason. Now we are scared more than them, we would like to flee to a safe place, we are the enemy.
Regular school time, office hours, all the normal rituals of civil life like shaking hands or kissing – they are all disrupted now. We miss them. We start to understand how good we had it, when we were complaining.
Western society is very individualistic, social media made us compare to the rich and famous, parents told us we can have everything we want. The virus is showing us that solutions lie in being responsible to each other, in sharing a sense of community, in working together.
Let’s stop blaming each other and criticising how others react – they react like that because they feel that’s the best way.
And let’s start wondering what we can all learn from this, together.