As uncertainty about the post-virus world continues, many experts and leading organizations are sharing predictions about the same. From changes in company culture to increased support to employee wellbeing to a boost in digital transformation, organizations have a lot to learn, to look forward to, to re/build and change for good. And a lot of what a company’s work landscape will look like post the pandemic depends on what the company does today. Here’s what we found:
Employers will understand the real meaning of work-life balance
Having to work from home, every professional – CEOs, directors, managers, executives, and employees – are experiencing the difficulties of managing personal and professional lives. Experts are hoping that this experience will shake a common assumption of organizations: that their 24/7-work culture was working well.
It would shake employers’ idea of an ‘ideal worker’, according to an article in the Harvard Business Review, which explains the professional stigmas ingrained within work cultures that look down upon professionals who choose a balance between work and life. The pandemic is the time when companies will re-examine which of their traditional ways of working is not necessary and can be done away with.
Leadership will see improvement
Whether an organization is disrupted due to a natural calamity, war, political unrest, or a pandemic, throughout a crisis, leadership is more important than any other factor. As McKinsey articulates, “What leaders need during a crisis is not a predefined response plan but behaviors and mindsets that will prevent them from overreacting to yesterday’s developments and help them look ahead.”
While leaders may have been able to navigate difficult situations during normal times, the inefficiency of leaders during server crisis situations is hard to ignore. The result: those with weak leadership skills may not survive during or after the pandemic or will have to step up and set new standards for leadership.
Company cultures will change
How an organization behaved during the pandemic will ascertain how its culture will change and be in the future. Asking a few basic questions can help us perceive this.
- Did your organization bring any changes to the work culture and employee wellbeing?
- What impact did your organizations’ behavior have on the employees?
- Has the organization’s’ handling of the pandemic changed the perceptions of its partners and employees – good or bad?
The answers to these simple questions will reflect on how a company’s culture will change. Here’s what some experts say:
- Michael Beer: Organizations will develop trust-based cultures with employees.
- Ryan Buell: Businesses will add value to customers by helping them (customers) be more helpful.
- Amy Edmondson: Leadership will engage people to work together creatively.
Technological transformation and comfort with tech will increase
Whether a professional is comfortable with tech or highly challenged, working from home during the pandemic has forced everyone to adapt to technological tools and online team platforms. A direct impact of this would be seen in the post-pandemic work world. Professionals will be more tech-savvy and be more open to learning new tools. Likewise, organizations, too, will have to up their digital game in order to bounce back with speed to recover fast. Digital transformation will see a boost across sectors and businesses.
Online will see an increased boost
Not just work from home and online working tools and software, businesses and companies will see a major shift in their online activities. As consumers will buy more online, businesses, too, will adopt more advanced online systems. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, and data analytics will see a surge greater than there was before the pandemic struck the world. Mom and pop stores may turn to take the e-commerce route, service providers will make digital a key part of its functions and jobs in IT and digital will see an increased demand.
To sum it up
This too shall pass – the current favorite four-word phrase of people across the globe, it is one that shares optimism and hope for how the world of business and work would be, once the pandemic has passed. And what companies do now – how they treat employees, customers, partners; how companies approach social and community commitments; what kind of emphasis they put on learning lessons from the present situation – will sum up their post-COVID future.