The last couple of years will go down in history – and we all know why.
The global pandemic has changed so many things in so many ways, leading to what could arguably be considered a whole new era for businesses and lifestyles alike. Sadly, so many have struggled during this time, but whilst it is far from over, COVID-19 has also given us many hard-earned lessons that we should try to take with us going forward.
Let’s take a moment to reflect on the things that we’ve learned throughout this trying time and make a commitment to keep them in our minds as we start to get back to a sense of normal in our lives.
In 2020, without warning, the world turned upside down right in front of us.
We watched schools, businesses, offices – almost everything – shut down. Our homes suddenly transformed from our comfort zones into shared workspaces, study areas, schools, gyms and more.
These sudden shifts forced us all to adapt.
We had to do things that we didn’t think we ever would or could.
As businesses, we were compelled to innovate across so many different fields. We had no choice but to face a new reality. It wasn’t fair, but that didn’t matter – it happened anyway. So, innovate we did.
COVID-19 wasn’t fair, but that didn’t matter – it happened anyway. So, innovate we did.
As terrible as this new reality was, it just goes to show that every grey cloud has a silver lining.
Nothing illustrates this concept better than this meme that surfaced soon after the outbreak began:
The impact of COVID-19 on businesses
There’s no doubt that COVID-19 has had a major impact on businesses all over the world.
Sydney Business Insights recently acknowledged that, even now, we are still trying to figure out the future of business given the impact of the pandemic. This comes as no surprise. What we initially thought would be a passing problem has since evolved into a long-term trend that, to this day, still demands new solutions. For example:
While each organisation has had their own unique experience, there are emerging trends that have been observed across all industries as a direct result.
For instance,over 81% of employees now believe that they should have the option to work from home. Of course, it’s still yet to be seen what impact – whether better or worse - remote work will have on business, however, some organisations that utilised remote workers prior to the pandemic did report a 15% higher net income.
Remote work started as a necessity.
While many businesses had to sadly close their doors during lockdowns, there were still those that boomed due to new-found demands in the market. For instance, food delivery businesses, along with other courier services and technology-related brands, became the most sought-after and highly-active industries.
While the impact of the pandemic has been different for each individual business, there is one common factor: change. Whether it was a change in our physical working space or a change in our processes, all of us have had to go through a change of some sort – and many of us had to do this almost overnight.
These are the hard-earned lessons that I believe we should all reflect on and keep in mind for years to come.
The silver linings: lessons we learned from the pandemic
As we continue to endure the challenges of the pandemic, it’s hard to deny that despite the struggles we’ve faced, there were plenty of lessons that we learnt as well.
We’ve all paid a great price for these lessons. So, as much as none of us want to go through this again, we must remember that life is unpredictable, and the next time we are facing change, these lessons we’ve learnt will help us to make it through to the other side.
I’d like to share 9 of the most valuable lessons that we at Melotti Media have taken from these past couple of years.
1. Embrace change and adapt
We can’t fight change. As cliché as this sounds, it’s the only constant in our world. As much as we want things to go back to “normal”, there’s now a new normal that we need to learn to be a part of.
If you weren’t using technology much before the pandemic, I’m sure you probably are now. So, ask yourself: would you have integrated technology into your daily operations as quickly as you did if not for the pandemic?
So many things now happen virtually. Screens have become the new home of conferences, meetings, classrooms and more. So, when life throws another curveball, will you be ready to embrace and adapt to the changes?
In business, it’s not just about survival. It’s about chasing growth by pivoting your business model to adapt to opportunities.
2. Embrace innovation
We don’t need to wait for a pandemic or a huge shift in our industry to push us to consider new ways of thinking. While sometimes we may need a nudge, remember that pushing boundaries is the key to business success.
For example, Melotti Media launched an online educational platform in response to the huge demand for digital courses. While this has been great, we’ve realised that it shouldn’t have taken something as big as COVID-19 to trigger us to look to this new area of expansion.
If you want to be a pioneer in your field, remember the push that COVID-19 has given you to make changes and see if you can replicate that feeling again in the future.
3. Always have a safety net
Another important thing that we’ve learned is the value of having a Plan B.
Things don’t always go to plan, and it pays to have a backup plan (or two) just in case we encounter unexpected hurdles.
Ask yourself: if, for some reason, we can’t do the things we used to, what are our options? Do we have the cash flow to keep us going? Do we have an alternative approach that will stand the test of time?
For example, in early 2020, I had a friend who moved their dance studio to online classes via Zoom almost immediately. While their competitors simply closed, she sent a message to their clients saying: “Here’s the link. See you for our regular class but online.”
This pandemic has taught us that having alternatives is now less of a luxury and more of a necessity. A backup plan for your business can mean the difference between survival and failure.
4. Nurture your relationships
Through isolation, we came to appreciate the true value of human contact.
Apart from the personal perspective, maintaining connections in a professional setting has become more important than ever. With remote work becoming the norm, communicating effectively with your entire team is crucial to maintaining productivity and operational efficiency. It’s also a great opportunity to empower your team, so everyone can grow together – even when you’re apart.
5. Harness the power of technology
Technology has become a part of our everyday lives, and now that physical interactions are somewhat limited, it has become our main way of keeping in touch.
The pandemic has shown us that we can connect with people in so many different ways – the opportunities are almost infinite. While social media was already widely used before COVID-19, its use has now become even more widespread, with even those reluctant to embrace technology now jumping on board to stay connected.
As a business owner, I realised the true potential of digital technology throughout the pandemic – and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one. We now make use of everything from advanced CRMs, to upgraded accounting systems, cloud backups, digital conferencing, team coordination platforms, automation, cybersecurity and much more.
I’m sure I wasn’t the only business owner who realised the true potential of digital technology!
6. Give the people the content they want
While we were in lockdown, people became more active online and were constantly searching for more content to devour.
Their insatiable hunger for blogs, articles, quizzes, videos, podcasts and more was off the charts – and I don’t predict this to end any time soon!
So, we must keep up with them!
Online content has become more crucial than ever before during these trying times. Audiences aren’t just looking for entertainment either; they’re looking for value. As businesses, it’s important to work with this trend and create content that is tailored to the current situation by using messaging that is empathetic.
7. Health is undeniably wealth
The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to reconsider our priorities. Now more than ever, we recognise the importance of overall health.
I’m not just talking about physical health either.
The pandemic has taken a toll on everyone’s mental health. It’s important to check in with those around us, as well as check in with ourselves too. We should acknowledge how much this pandemic has affected us and remember that it’s okay to not be okay.
I feel that we’ve learned to better look after each other throughout these challenging times – both at home and in the workplace (whether face-to-face or virtually).
We also need to remember to take a break every now and then – especially since we can’t physically separate the office from our home these days.
8. Be there for others
As I said earlier, the pandemic has impacted everyone in different ways.
If your business was one of the lucky ones that adapted and experienced a boom, fantastic! Congratulations. Be proud of your endurance. Perhaps even consider the opportunity to implement more corporate social responsibility into your operations.
Remember, though, that this time hasn’t been beneficial for everyone. This is your opportunity to reach out to other business owners and support them.
If your business did struggle, then know that you’re not alone and reflect on the lessons you’ve learned throughout this time so that you can come back better than ever.
If you need help, read: How to survive when business is slow?
9. Survival and success take a community effort
We’re not meant to face challenges on our own. It takes a combined effort from everyone involved.
From adhering to restrictions to making sure that everyone you know feels valued – no action is too small.
In a similar way, we must be aware of not only when to offer help but also when to ask for it too. Whether it’s emotional support or an extra helping hand so you can rise up to the challenge or take advantage of new opportunities, all you have to do is ask.
While this pandemic has forced us to maintain physical and social distance, it’s also taught us the value of staying together (metaphorically, of course). We have survived the past couple of years through unity and solidarity – and this is something that we must never forget, even when things start to get better.
People’s insatiable hunger for content increased over the last two years – and I don’t predict this to end any time soon!
How can we make the best use of these lessons?
The lessons outlined above were born out of our struggles and our challenges, and not acknowledging them would eventually lead us to face similar hardships to what we’ve just gone through.
If I’m being honest, one of the things that has kept me going most is looking forward to a COVID-free world. I’ve even made some predictions as to what that post-pandemic world will look like for businesses. Spoiler alert: most of them aren’t bad!
Once the pandemic is behind us, I believe that we can continue to be flexible with working from home, as this has proven beneficial for many organisations worldwide. I also believe that we should continue to find ways to innovate and adapt using technology going forward.
There are a large number of lessons that we have learned over the past couple of years that will remain relevant to the challenges that we will no doubt face in the future, but many of these lessons also present opportunities as well.
There are many takeaways that I believe will help your business to keep growing after the pandemic. While it may take some time before we learn to embrace the “new normal”, preparing your business for the next stage and reclaiming the next few years will help to give your organisation an advantage and secure the future once again – regardless of the new challenges that may arise.
We’ve all had different experiences throughout the pandemic, but I think there’s a lesson that we all learned: the importance of seizing every opportunity.
Seize every opportunity to talk and connect with your loved ones, because it becomes all the more difficult when you’re forced to stay apart.
Seize every opportunity to grow and innovate, because these innovations will eventually become an advantage.
Seize every opportunity to offer a helping hand, to learn, to do more and be more every single day – because we never know when it will be too late to act.
The pandemic has highlighted just how unpredictable the world is. Challenges are inevitable, both in our business and our personal lives. So it’s not enough that we simply take note of these lessons – their true value is realised when we translate them into action.
So, as we start to move forward once again, I just want to leave this reminder: we must never forget the lessons that we have learned.
Move forward with Melotti Media – let’s chat about you.
As we adapt to our new normal, it’s only natural that your goal is to grow your business and achieve success. One of the best ways to do this is by developing a comprehensive and effective marketing strategy. However, we understand that you’re already feeling time-poor and spread thin, and it’s possible that you still have a lot of unanswered questions.
But you don’t have to worry!
At Melotti Media, we’re taking the lessons that we’ve learned to assist you with your content marketing needs while you focus on what matters most to you – growing your business.
Let’s embrace the new normal and reclaim your business by building a quality marketing strategy!
For more information or to speak to a trusted copywriter, contact us now at firstname.lastname@example.org
We can sharpen your words to achieve your goals today!
DISCLAIMER: This blog expresses the opinion of Christopher Melotti (Melotti Media) and should be taken as general information only. No responsibility is taken for your actions in response to any content in this blog. See the website's Terms and Conditions for more information.