04 May The new normal
-Written by Margaret Gott
The current worldwide pandemic has brought with it its own set of buzzwords. We are living in “unprecedented times” and to move on we need to find a “new normal”. The challenges we face on a daily basis, although differing widely in terms of risk, are very real for all of us whether putting personal safety aside to care for patients or adjusting to working from home while home-schooling our children. While assurances are thin on the ground at the moment, we can be fairly certain that post-pandemic life will have changed in lots of ways from what, only a few months ago, we considered “normal”.
In business we have been forced to review processes and very quickly adapt to new ways of working. While communication has always been key to selling our goods and services, regardless of the field you work in, many businesses have undoubtedly found positives from current communication practices they will want to retain when lockdown is eased and eventually lifted. Not so long ago, firing off a quick email to a client, supplier or colleague would have enabled us to tick off an item on our to-do list. Depending on the size of the recipient’s inbox and their own to-do-list, the time-lapse between us clicking send and receiving a response is immeasurable, and even then may require a series of subsequent emails (and more items added to every growing to-do lists!). With so many of us afforded the luxury (although I realise many may not see it as such!) of working from home, we have seen a wholesale embracing of such technology as Zoom and Skype (other video calling apps are available!) giving us instant access to our business associates. This increased face-to-face contact gives us the chance to discuss requirements, share ideas more freely than in an email, gauge how ideas are received and, in many cases, results in instant decision-making. The savings of time and maybe travel and accommodation costs are particularly welcome at the moment when many businesses are facing increased financial pressure. The increased social interaction has untold advantages for all of us and for our businesses. It seems Buzby was right; you really can “make someone happy” with a call (yes, I am really THAT old!).
So, whatever challenges you are facing right now, it is worth taking note of recent adaptations you’ve made and consider what advantages these will give you in post-pandemic life.