Here's the first paragraph from a recent article in the New York Times about how workers in the US are resigning in huge, unprecedented numbers and many are seriously reconsidering going back to their old jobs.
Fall was meant to mark the beginning of the end of the labor shortage that has held back the nation’s economic recovery. Expanded unemployment benefits were ending. Schools were reopening, freeing up many caregivers. Surely, economists and business owners reasoned, a flood of workers would follow.
The general sentiment from the New York Times article is that - economists are very confused as to why this is happening and apparently nobody forecast this as a potential future reality when lockdowns first hit.
Economists (as bright as they are) still to this day, haven't yet realised that people are not predictable robots.
So here's a shocking piece of news for all the economists out there; people are weird. They think weird things and do weird things.
However, it's certainly not unimaginable that 'the greatest life disruption' that we have all collectively experienced in our lifetimes (the covid-19 pandemic) is going to produce some bizarre and unexpected consequences.
So let's just state the bleeding obvious here.
THERE IS NO GOING BACK TO WHATEVER YOU THOUGHT NORMAL WAS.
The world is now a very different place. It's a new place - many of the old rules no longer apply.
People have experienced unbelievable amounts of grief, stress, anxiety, frustration and anger.
The ways in which people shop, connect with each other, work, entertain themselves, think, process grief, see the future, value things, see themselves and experience life has radically changed.
Many people have lost loved ones, some people lost their jobs, some people lost their marriages, some people lost their minds.
Being confused that workers are not overjoyed to go back to their shitty jobs and play political games with incompetent managers actually just illustrates how disconnected those that are confused, are from reality.
How should we rather think?
With that understanding - what is useful is to rather accept that this pandemic will have radically unexpected and wildly outlandish consequences for many parts of how we see society and the structures and rules that we thought were set in stone.
To explore these changes more effectively, it's best not to use old models and spreadsheets that simply forecast predictable, linear changes to the status quo, but to rather use your imagination as how things might possibly evolve.
Imagine wild things, speculate, be outrageous in your crazy postulations.
When people are acting strangely - what's needed is for all of us to then think strangely too.
Shit is going to get super weird; expect it and plan for it.