#COVID-19 has changed our professional landscape – perhaps forever. Businesses that balked at allowing telecommuting are embracing staff taking initiating and connecting, producing and meeting whatever deadlines are in place. Restaurants – those that can survive this chaos – are enlisting waitstaff to connect with customers online and by phone to take and produce pick-up or delivery orders. Teachers from kindergarten through higher education are instructing students, responding to messages, and finding new avenues to explore with their classes.
It is difficult to not be somewhat emotional during this chaos. I am continuing to teach my Rutgers business communications course that was already an online class. Only one of 30 students has dropped in the past week; a few others are trying to catch up as they deal with effects of #COVID-19 in their lives. I struggle with whether I should make changes in the course or try to maintain some normalcy. Finding the compromise seems to have worked so far.
Deadlines are softened; extension requests considered more closely; slight adjustments to the team project; all of these tweaks are allowing students the ability to breathe a little easier in order to complete successfully complete the course. So that’s one small victory.
My client, as always, is incredibly supportive. The growing real estate development company, Kokes Properties, LLC has me crafting some content in part focusing on sales success during this difficult period. It’s a balance to encourage potential new home buyers to consider this new townhome construction while navigating this crisis that changes daily. Michael J. Kokes and his expert team are proceeding with this nearly-complete project and are fortunate to be economically sound during this period.
Will we revert to our ‘old’ ways and operations when the danger has passed? Some businesses will – others will not. Time will tell. Our Realtor mentioned that the way they do business may never be the same.
Now, for the personal. We have sold our home of more than 27 years and are moving permanently to New Hampshire where we bought a home in 2016. We have developed a community of friends in the small town. Our life transitioned there as we found more happiness and quality of life there.
Times are bittersweet for all of us; professionally and personally. When we talk about professional soft skills, listening and empathy are among them. Listen well, understand questions and comments given this unusual time and thoughtfully make decisions and choices that can benefit your organization, team, business – and you. Be well.