The PeopleAlchemist Edit: change & transformation, business & lifestyle experimentation for TheWomanAlchemist
How’s the new normal working out now? And what is likely to be going forward?
Before COVID-19, the most significant disruptions to work involved new technologies and growing trade links. However, COVID-19 has changed the importance of the physical dimension of work. Considering the sprouting of unknown variances on an almost regular basis now, how will we adapt in the longer term?
To start with is essential to understand what industries/work requires a physical presence now and in the future.
HOW’S THE NEW NORMAL WORKING OUT
Only the actual caregiving roles (like doctors and nurses) require close interaction with patients in the medical care arena. The administrative staff, however, can do more work remotely. Lab technicians and pharmacists work, on the other hand, require specialized equipment on-site, even though they have relatively little exposure to other people.
An on-site presence is essential where the service provision requires an on-site customer interaction like retail, banks, and post offices. Some work can migrate to e-commerce and other digital transactions. However, a behavioural change is necessary for a sustainable long term.
On the other hand, the leisure and travel industry (hotels, restaurants, airports, and entertainment venues) is home and relies totally upon one-to-one interaction with customers.
The pandemic caused most of these places to close in 2020, including airports and airlines operating on a skeleton basis. They then had to cope with restrictions being applied off and on, suddenly, during various times. Like right now with the new Omicron variant.
WHAT IS THE FUTURE OF BUSINESS TRAVEL?
Remote work has been instrumental in continuing with business activities. Significantly so as domestic and international travel was/is restricted.
But videoconferencing has also opened the door for virtual meetings and different ways of working. So while leisure travel and tourism are likely to rebound (I, for one, cannot wait for some travel and tourism abroad), business travel may not return in the same way. And business travel happens to be the most lucrative segment for airlines.
Consequently, there could be a significant impact on employment in commercial aerospace, airports, hospitality, and related foodservice. In addition, E-commerce and other virtual transactions are booming.
Their transformation will also have a knock-on effect in other work areas as business models shift in response.
In industries like construction sites, farms, residential and commercial grounds, COVID-19 had less impact. This is because work in these areas requires low proximity and few interactions with others, principally outdoors.
However, although it can be done remotely, some work is better in person, such as negotiations, brainstorming sessions, providing sensitive feedback, and onboarding new employees.
How’s the new normal been working out for you?