4 Disruptions from the COVID-19 Pandemic that May (should) Stay with Us Forever

“The Chinese use two brush strokes to write the word ‘crisis.’ One brush stroke stands for danger; the other for opportunity. In a crisis, be aware of the danger — but recognize the opportunity.”

Photo Credits: Anna Shvets from Pexels.com

We are living in very interesting times. With over 680,000 confirmed cumulative cases of Coronavirus affecting over 199 countries and territories, we are facing a pandemic like never before in world history. One of the things I am continually grateful for is the fact that we are faced with this pandemic in a much better time than all past global pandemics. We have much better technologies and understanding of data and are able to track new infections wherever they happen around the world in (almost) real time. We are able to access this information and use it as individuals for decision making.

Now with all the bad things happening around the world because of this pandemic, it is very easy to get lost in these and fail to acknowledge some of the “good” things or opportunities that are coming out of this season. Like I have shared in the quote above, in a crisis, be aware of the danger — but recognize the opportunity. In this article, I would like to share four disruptions/opportunities happening currently around the world that may stay with us after the pandemic and change our lives forever.

Here they are:

1. Working from home: With several governments declaring nation-wide lockdowns due to the pandemic, many employers have realized that there is no way they can either lay-off, issue force leave or even just let their employees go without working for such extended periods of time and as such have asked many of their staff to work from home. A quick scan through social media all over the world for the past few days and you can see how many people are excited about this “new idea” of working from home. It is estimated that drivers lost 99 hours in 2019 in the US alone (approx. $88 billion) due to traffic jam and congestion (INRIX Report 2019). It is unfortunate that in some cases these are the most productive hours for employees.

I am lucky that my employer is one of the few futurist organizations that have afforded me the opportunity to work home since January 2019, but it is my hope that organizations start to seriously consider working from home as an option for some of their employees. This option does not only save help employees recover back some of their productive time but could also save organizations money in form of rental costs for these employees’ offices.

2. Online Events: This season must be the best marketing and sales period for online video conferencing software companies like GoToMeeting, Zoom, Facebook Live, YouTube Live etc. as they do not spend a lot of marketing dollars. Word of Mouth from their own customers is doing most of the marketing for them. There has certainly been an increase in the number of online events during this season. I certainly know several conferences that have been turned into online events because of this pandemic.

One event, I am particularly interested in is online church services. This is really because a few years ago several churches used to claim “Social media is from the devil and Christians should not be on these platforms” but now have to adapt these technologies in order to continue ministering to their congregations. This is a great move for everyone in the body of Christ as it helps us realize that maybe we should not be expanding our physical building but rather our capacity to minister to the world using the available technologies. It is my hope that even after this pandemic churches and religious institutions will continue to use these technologies to further their missions.

3. Homeschooling: Even though homeschooling is legal in several parts of the world, there are very few parents who actually choose this option of educating their children. There are several benefits of homeschooling including lack of violence, better social development, more effective learning, better education, and flexibility in learning etc. It is estimated that there are only 2.5 million homeschoolers in the US alone.

With several countries announcing lockdowns and asking schools to close, many children will be staying for some time. Some countries/states have closed their schools until the end of the academic year. This is now forcing many parents to homeschool their children in order to ensure that they do not fall behind in their academics. I personally spend a couple of hours every morning preparing learning materials and teaching my kids to ensure that they do not fall behind when they return to school.

Homeschooling may not stay with us entirely when everything returns back to normal, but it is my hope and prayer that as parents we will stay actively engaged in the academic lives of our children. I believe this will greatly improve their learning outcomes.

4. Preventive health care: Some of the most basic ways of preventing the spread of disease and infections include washing of hands, use of alcohol-based sanitizers, use of face-masks etc. According to the Centre for Disease Control (CDC), keeping hands clean is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others (CDC). Many diseases and conditions are spread by not washing hands with soap and clean, running water. Never in our lifetime have we seen the level of advocacy towards these preventive health care practices. Almost all governments and leaders around the world have called on the masses to practice some of the most basic preventive health care practices.

It is my hope that even after this pandemic, these practices will be deeply ingrained in our lifestyles. I strongly believe this practice alone will help prevent the spread of many diseases around the world.

I hope you have enjoying reading this post. Now, I know that many of these are not necessarily new practices, but I believe the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the spread of these ideas on a global scale. Feel free to add to this list in case you noticed any other disruptions that I may have left out. Additionally, feel free to share any thoughts or comments you have on these ideas.



Allan is a blogger, avid reader, statistician, businessman, and aspiring investor

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Allan Kakinda

Allan is a blogger, avid reader, statistician, businessman, and aspiring investor