Currently working remotely from Norway, IComm UX and Change Manager, Dale Reeves reflects on a year like no other.
Innovation needed to rebuild
We started 2020 in Australia with devastating bushfires which resulted in many people losing their lives and livelihoods. People also had their homes burnt to the ground and businesses turned to ashes. We saw scenes of people in communities rushing to the shoreline to escape apocalyptic scenes. The devastation that was left is hard to fathom and still today many people and businesses are rebuilding and recovering.
As a community we needed to find innovative ways to help rebuild and support those affected by these events. Some businesses needed to find temporary locations to operate from while the rebuild was taking place and others simply needed money to help them stay afloat.
Digital transformation became a way of survival
Little did we know that soon we were going to experience something that did not just impact our local economy and many rural businesses but the entire country and world’s economy – COVID-19. Our world was once again going to be rocked to the core and the way we ran our lives and livelihoods were again going to be challenged in a way that none of us had experienced before.
With the ashes still smoldering from the bushfires, in March many companies were forced to rapidly change the way they did business to survive and this time it was affecting nearly every sector. Our communities were forced into lockdown and businesses were forced to change or simply expire. As a change manager with years of experience it also meant rewriting the rule book. We needed to change the way we dealt with organisational change and we needed to do it fast as people’s livelihoods were at stake.
Timeframes were thrown out the window, delivery methods completely changed from face to face to remote and the way we engaged with business also was rewritten. This was no longer a “nice to have” but a “do or die” requirement for many.
This digital transformation journey would have taken many businesses years to accomplish however due to this global pandemic it reduced the time for this journey down to a matter of months. It has also resulted in a lasting shift for many organisations from a digital transformation and remote working perspective.
From the ashes: everlasting enhancements
After how horrible 2020 was, we can take some solace in knowing that from the ashes of 2020 will be everlasting enhancements to the way we conduct our lives, the way we do business and the work life balance that sits in-between.
Even when things do return to normal these newly adopted ways of working for many businesses will not go away, as businesses now know that remote working and digital transformation are possible. These changes will therefore mean continued flexibility for staff and a better work life balance.
Before I leave you with a quote that is quite relevant for businesses that faced 2020, I wanted to wish everyone a great and prosperous 2021.
“The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence – it is to act with yesterday’s logic.”– Peter Drucker