When it comes to businesses...pain doesn’t even begin to cover what's going on. Many companies were caught flatfooted. ‘No one could have been prepared for such an unprecedented event’ is the running narrative.
“All great changes are preceded by chaos.”
– Deepak Chopra
‘I think Deepak was onto something with this quote. The world as we know it has changed- forever! It’s hard to imagine that almost two months ago, we took for granted so many freedoms we didn’t think we needed. Being able to leave our homes and return whenever we wished; spending time visiting friends and family which, ironically due to the then ‘current state of the economy’, we rarely did. The world has been given an unwanted break and in a way, restored to factory settings. We are now, ‘forced’ to spend more time with family, prioritizing our health, review bucket lists and plans that fell by the wayside as we chased ‘a better life’
“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change.”
― Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein
When it comes to businesses...pain doesn’t even begin to cover what's going on. Many companies were caught flatfooted. ‘No one could have been prepared for such an unprecedented event’ is the running narrative. Terms like ‘recession’, ’global meltdown’ & ‘end times’ dominate the news, and our conversations. This situation has exposed how much we’ve been relying on old fashioned traditional modus operandi, physical systems which though adequate, have limited adaptability. With what seems like an endless eternity of being locked down in our homes, these legacy systems are proving bothersome for organizations.
Meanwhile, other organizations owing to technology, opportunity, timing, or all three, have been able to and continue to operate sufficiently. A quick search on the internet will bring up companies such as Gitlab, 10up, Automattic, and many others; companies that have been working remotely from the start and therefore probably have less to worry about in these ‘COVID infested’ times we are living in. Having leveraged early on cloud-native technology and flexible working models, they may just make it through unscathed. With online collaboration and communication products like G Suite, Copper CRM, Zoho, Quickbooks online… and many many more, we should also follow suit and not just to get through this hurdle we are facing but for future posterity of our businesses and the global economy.
“Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.”
– John C. Maxwell
So now we are in limbo...what happens next? My take…? We need to get creative; rethink how we have been doing things- reinvent ourselves and our ways of working. I acknowledge that sadly we all don't have that luxury but maybe through the ingenuity and out of the box thinking of those who can, we may come up with solutions not just for ourselves but for those that are desperately struggling.
Let us find among the technological opportunities out there, ways in which we can keep our businesses running because truly now is not the time to skimp on solutions that may well save our livelihoods and those who rely upon us. Let us embrace opportunities and/ or innovations for continuity of some if not all of our operations.
For a continent like Africa that is rich in so many ways- this could be the reset we need to get ourselves together and rise, be the giant we were always meant to be. We should not let this scourge take away our hope, reduce us to nothing.
As we continue to seek and pray for a resolution to the current crisis, let us follow the recommended safety precautions, hold on tight to our loved ones, remain steadfast to our values and reach out to our less fortunate while we prepare for the next stage in the evolution of our world, because this too shall pass.