Don´t look back – look ahead!

Source: Fastcompany 04-20-20

The last couple of weeks have shocked our lives to the core and turned a lot of things upside down. Which makes it totally normal that we want to pity ourselves for a while to mourn all the “normal” that we might have lost. But it´s also time now to look ahead and embrace change. Let´s have a closer look what we might have given up but also what we´ll get in exchange.

Working from home

Home office and its benefits have been discussed for many years, but reluctant managers only gradually allowed their employees to work from home. With stay at home orders in place, companies adapted quickly to let people work from home. Obviously this isn´t a benefit for everyone, if you have to juggle little kids, daily errands and work at the same time you might be yearning to be back in your usual office environment. Nevertheless, working from home is here to stay! As Jared Spataro, corporate vice president at Microsoft 365 stated: “This time will go down as a turning point for the way people work and learn.… People are carrying what they learned and experienced from remote work back to their “new normal.” We’re learning so much about sustained remote work during this time.”

Digital migration accelerates

Digital change has been a much talked about topic, but a virus forcing many people to now get digitally active has changed the world overnight. Being physically apart, people rely on video calls more than ever before. We can now see loved ones who live far away daily, virtual happy hours and birthday parties are helping us to remain close while practicing social distancing. In the professional setting, organizations have resisted these changes for decades but are now forced to opt for video conferences instead of business trips. Online education instead of in-class teaching has showed the need for online access and devices in every home. It is now so dire that it may mobilize society to treat internet connectivity as a must-have rather than a nice-to-have. The growing acceptance of technology to help us to feel connected will have lasting benefits.

Transportation rebounds and evolves

With the beginning of cities reopening, people will be looking for affordable, reliable ways to stay socially distant whilst commuting. Some might turn to transportation options such as ride share, bike share or scooters. These changes hold an opportunity for governments to consider reshaping cities to be built around their people and not cars.

Food and grocery delivery

Another change that is here to stay is the way we shop for groceries as well as food delivery. Delivery Hero, the world´s leading local delivery platform, has doubled orders (YoY) to 239 million, with more than 3 million orders delivered in a single day. Grocery delivery company Instacart announced in March that it will hire 300,000 workers to meet surging demand for grocery deliveries. Prior to the crisis, online grocery shopping was only a tiny player, accounting for just 3% of grocery spending. This new habit is most likely to stay, where shops and restaurants who don´t have online ordering will have tough time surviving.

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