What Does Your Post-Pandemic Future Look Like?
Randy Wolken, President & CEO
Most of us have been living in our pandemic-altered life for over a year now. As vaccinations become more available and we emerge from the pandemic, it’s time to prepare for what life will be like post-pandemic. Due to the length and severity of this event, life has been permanently altered. Our economy, our daily lives, and our opportunities have all changed. It’s time to assess our situations and prepare for our post-pandemic futures.
We are not yet out of this crisis. More than 50,000 individuals still get infected daily, and hundreds are dying. We will have plenty of sickness and suffering ahead. However, we will emerge from this period. The pandemic and its grip on our minds and lives will subside. However, its impacts will linger for years and possibly decades to come. Now is an excellent time to assess the changes in our lives and the world around us and to prepare for how best to proceed. It’s a good time for reflection as you decide your growth path forward.
Leaders and individuals should take the time to assess the new environment we now live in due to COVID-19. It is not the same world with the same opportunities. It’s time to begin to ask yourself questions relevant to your circumstances. What has changed at work in the way you operate? How has your business been altered by COVID-19? What new skills have you learned? What new opportunities do you see revealed during the pandemic that carry over to the post-pandemic period? What gets you excited about the future? These questions and others can help you prepare for what is emerging all around us.
For me, I have seen radical changes in the way we work at MACNY and in my personal life. The virtual world I now live in has altered my opportunities. Before the pandemic, we had already begun to envision MACNY as a digital service provider, extending our reach statewide. At that time, 98% of our work was still done in person. Now, due to the pandemic, 98% of our work is distanced and virtual. We are on multiple platforms delivering more service to more members than ever. We now typically offer 6 to 10 events per week, serving 150 – 200 individuals weekly. We have served more members in six months than in the previous year. And that is just one example.
We are now very good at digital delivery and service. We are currently implementing the changes needed to maintain this service level even as we begin offering our in-person and hybrid events starting in May. By next year, we will be fully back into our in-person offerings while delivering all of our virtual events as well. The pandemic has forever altered the depth and breadth of services that MACNY can provide, erasing time and space as a barrier to what we do.
I have seen the same impact on my productivity and capacity. I can attend virtual meetings and contribute between two and three times more than I did before the crisis. I can participate in two events at once if I really need to. I am working with individuals across the country and on other continents. The virtual world allows for more time with my family, which is spread across many states. I long for being back in-person. However, I will also maintain the digital world advantages that we now have learned to embrace.
So much has changed due to COVID-19. It has caused much suffering and pain. It has also altered our economy, lives, and future opportunities. It’s an excellent time to assess the changes, plan for our futures and live into what we can now accomplish given the new world we live in. Embrace the post-pandemic future. It will help you live more fully.