We have known for thousands of years that there is a time to reap and a time to sow. It is already clear that this tiny COVID-19 virus will bring about massive change globally in the way things are done moving forward.
The economic impact is clearly going to be very deep and no country or sector is going to be immune. Even those few business sectors which may appear to be less affected directly will still feel the effects if their clients, their suppliers and their families are themselves impacted.
As each country is affected by the virus, social distancing measures spread across the globe and, eventually, so do lock-downs, escalating from avoiding people and busy places to opting, and then eventually being forced to stay at home.
Depending on the nature of their work, some people have been able to transition to remote working and hopefully keep their income rolling. Others are less fortunate either because of the nature of their jobs – pilots do not generally work from home – or because their companies may not have deployed the infrastructure to support 100% of their staff working remotely.
Clearly, one of the consequences of the COVID-19 situation is that we will all have more time on our hands at home. This is the time to sow, particularly aiming to undertake tasks of self-development.
There are thousands of sources of high-quality learning materials which are available on-line. Sites such as Coursera, Udemy and Udacity are the best known and offer a very broad range of courses, particularly Udemy. Many of these relate to business management, technology, personal development, marketing, design even photography. You name it, you can up your skills while you have time on your hands, ready for the inevitable rebuilding stage that businesses and communities are going to need to go through. It could also be the time for you to learn other things of personal interest like a language or History of Art.
The COVID-19 is probably the single biggest threat most of us have ever had to deal with in our business careers but it will pass. Like good planning has helped some companies to deal with the current situation better than others, it is also good planning for the next phase that will determine which companies and individuals will be the most successful moving forward.