So what? What now?

No sane person ever wanted to 'go back to the way things were' post-pandemic.

Today is the day - 24 May 2022 - that declares that the pandemic has officially passed.

We're calling it officially over, because there doesn't appear to be anyone officially in charge who has the inclination to draw a line in the sand and end it - like we were all hoping would happen quickly in 2020.

The day we've all been hoping for is finally here.

From this day on - we are now in the post-pandemic era.

So what? What now?

Remember when this whole thing started - lots of clever people suggested 'that you should never let a good disaster go to waste.'

So if we are not to completely waste the last two years of this shitty thing - what is now different?

What are your post-pandemic resolutions?

How are you using this traumatic experience to make improvements?

Perhaps as a suggestions - before you feverishly answer these questions, it might be useful to note down what the last two years has changed and shifted, that is now presenting us with a great opportunity to reinvent things.

  1. Having spent two years watching Netflix, playing online games, reading massive amounts of information via online subscriptions - we are sick to death of online content and entertainment. Digital engagement is a useful, short-term utility, but it's just a stopgap when compared to being in the same room as other people, or actually taking a walk outside. We now have an over-supply of free, bite-sized, easily accessible snippets of knowledge on the web and a global population who have become conditioned into believing that they have developed themselves somehow in the midst of cloud of mental distraction. The 'ideas / content business' now sits at a crossroads, trying to navigate the way forward from here. How can you build a loyal, commercially-viable audience in the midst of this information overload? Breakdown? Breakthrough?
  2. The evidence is pretty clear - the test of true leadership is only revealed when significant pressure is applied on those so-called leaders to make the best decisions of behalf of the people that they so-called lead. Leaders that chose to retrench staff during the pandemic - the focus is on you. Leaders that willingly mislead people - the focus is on you. Leaders that took care of their own interests ahead of the interests of their people - everyone is looking at you. Leadership now means something completely different to what it did pre-2020; I'm personally eager to see who now dares to call themselves a leader with a straight face now that we all know exactly what a great truly leader is. Conversely, perhaps now that we all know what leadership isn't, it will be easier to spot real leadership when we experience it.
  3. Most of the work that is created by companies is mindless and uninspiring. It must be because having spent two years thinking about it; a lot of people are choosing to leave their jobs. Companies that take this golden opportunity to radically rethink and transform what work they do and how they do it will be the ones successful in attracting great talent in this post-pandemic era.
  4. The pandemic forced a lot of consumer brands to go online. The e-commerce landscape has consequentially become very crowded. In reality though - e-commerce is not an easy route-to-market to excel in. Even though they may have turned the channel on, most brands are almost entirely incompetent as digital natives; you just need to look at how poorly a massive business like Pick n Pay manages to totally butcher their e-commerce play to get a sense of how hard it really is to get it right. What this means is that post-pandemic, ironically, those brands that do take the time to design and build e-commerce offering that people actually want to use - will do very well. The trick here to getting it right is patience, humility, a clear vision of what you want to create and considered design. If somebody arrives at a meeting who, at some point, claims to have completed an MBA, show them the door and let them know that the place for unimaginative and boring is elsewhere.

There are a lot more changes that you can consider as leverage to design your post-pandemic strategy (these are just a few of ours), but what's ultimately important is that you don't waste this precious time for strategic renewal.

No sane person ever wanted to 'go back to the way things were' post-pandemic, and with an open-mind and a keen eye for spotting opportunity neither will you.