The World after Covid-19
Amidst the chaos and fear ignited by the exponential spread of COVID-19, we talk about “the new normal.” With more people testing positive every minute and increasing death tolls every day, the COVID-19 Pandemic has brought the world to a standstill with most countries operating under a strict lockdown regime. India is no exception to this.
If you’re living under anything other than a rock, you would have heard people and news channels mention, “the new normal”. What we fail to understand as viewers is that no one can predict the future. What we can do is form our own views on the trends we expect to continue and change once the pandemic has been brought to its knees.
In this article, we discuss our view on the new normal once lockdown ends, what you can expect to change, what you can expect to stay the same, and most importantly what you’ll need to keep in mind to form your own views.
Understanding the term - The New Normal:
“The New Normal” is the term that is widely being used to describe expectations of the World after COVID-19. The premise of “New Normal” is based on the fact that post-lockdown and post-pandemic, most of us expect life as we know it to change. Ranging from Basic activities such as Grocery Shopping to Social Events such as Weddings will see a drastic change in the way they are carried out. The New Normal focuses on those aspects of life before lockdown which are expected to remain changed post-pandemic lockdown lifting. For example, there are expectations that the Work from Home concept might gain more acceptance amongst businesses post-lock-down, so it would be included under the “New Normal”.
The New Normal – Our Expectations:
Now that you know what we mean by the concept, let us walk you through our expectations of the “New Normal” in a post-pandemic world. Below mentioned are just some of the changes we expect you to come by when stepping out post-lockdown!
Fear: For the first couple of weeks at least, people might be reluctant to leave their houses and resume activities as before. You’ll find other people in the grocery stores avoiding you like the plague and scared to stand in close queues! It’s going to take time for us as a society to overcome the fear that has gripped us due to COVID-19.
Safety Precautions: We expect that people would continue to follow the safety precautions recommended by the WHO and the State Governments even once the lockdown is lifted. People would leave homeless often than before, use masks and scarves to cover their faces, frequently sanitize their hands, maintain social distancing, and avoid coming in close contact with others!
Travel Drop: Even once the lockdown ends, we expect the Governments to maintain certain restrictions of travel (especially International Travel). For travel restrictions that have been lifted, people would still be reluctant to travel to other states because of 2 reasons – Fear and COVID-19 teaching us to use our technology more effectively. When you can conduct a meeting over a Zoom Call, why would you want to fly to the other city and have the same meeting?!
Entertainment: Even before the pandemic, “Netflix & Chill” had gained massive momentum, especially amongst the younger generations. With the lockdown in place, the entertainment industry has found its place online with Amazon Prime, Netflix, Disney Hotstar, and other platforms gaining increased subscription rates! Post lockdown we doubt people would go back from subscription-based content viewing to theatres and regular television!
Work: Evidently we expect multiple changes on the work front. It’s no surprise that most of us expect a Global Recession post lockdown and that’s going to highly impact all industries. While we refrain from delving into an industry-specific analysis, here are some of the more common changes we expect to see:
Organizations adopting and encouraging a Work-from-Home Regime for their employees.
Organizations focusing more strongly on their core requirements and trimming those activities which they deem to be frilled and non-essential.
Your workspace would change with more space between any two employees’ desks as we seek to maintain Social Distancing.
A halt on any promotions or raises that you were expecting.
Possible job cuts and hiring freezes.
Change in Sector Performance and Leaders.
Fitness: With COVID-19’s lockdown came an influx of free workout content online or via mobile apps! For those of you who always complained about not having the one hour to go to a gym and its commute, this is a god-send. Get customized training online using technology and at timings that work for you! Post lockdown, we expect this to continue and be a complement to the existing fitness regime. This way people would be able to attend classes virtually or physically depending upon their personal preferences!
Education: The lockdown has forever changed the education industry! With more classes moving online, people recognizing the benefits of online courses, an increase in webinars and online education, we expect more tuition classes to find themselves offering Video Content for students!
Socializing: The lockdown has got more of us reaching out to our friends and family on Video Calls and Telephonic Calls. Coffee calls, drinking nights and other group meetings over group video chats is expected to stay. Long work hours and time constraints might no longer prevent you from seeing your loved ones!
Work-Life Balance: With the world on lockdown, work-related commute hours have come down drastically. The slowdown has opened the eyes of employees and employers alike. While some managers maintain a work schedule time slot during the lockdown, others call their employees 24*7. For these employees, saying they’re out of office is no longer going to be the way to be done for the day. We expect to see some company guidelines coming in on the Work Timings for Work-from-Home scenarios as well as during Office Days. Employees would be reluctant to go back to working 24*7 as this lockdown reminds us of the importance of a work-life balance!
Forming Your Own Views:
While we all talk about the “New Normal” and our expectations for the same, it is essential for you to form your own views. None of us can predict the future or human behavior with complete confidence. We’re all just waiting to see the world go back to normal!