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Blessing in Disguise

Blessing in Disguise
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Blessing in Disguise

Weird title, huh? How can a pandemic be a blessing? So many lives at stake, economy turmoil is getting worse, more is expected – and then how can we call it as a blessing? Right?

If you’re reading this article either from home OR in simple terms while you and your family is safe and in good health – then “why shouldn’t you” consider it as a “blessing” in disguise

Whichever position we might be working on, we were always running behind achieving something! However small it might be, there was always a purpose we’d have been striving for! We wanted to get hold of few more things, but due to lack of time, we could not!

Due to rapid transformation in technology and its ease of adaptability, this struggle to have rendezvous with success became aggressive! When we talk about digital transformation, we didn’t even realize that now Alexa knows much more about an individual’s interests than his/her spouse! Eerie but true! Paytm has replaced your ATMs! And Social Media’s boon of “S.I.T” (Stay In Touch) literally makes you SIT in washroom with your smartphone! Smart Phone ensured that you become dumb by transferring all your smartness to the phone! Do you remember anyone’s mobile nos. anymore? Except few, do you remember birthdays anymore? Nope! Because, “thinking” is now a “luxury commodity” – people rarely afford it! Right from the veggies to imported items, you can buy on a single tap on your mobile screen and get it delivered to your doorstep at a cheaper cost than the store nearby! Malls are crowded even on weekdays! Hotel industry has flourished like never before. Now, we have ready food delivered at door step, and as they advertise – you can continue to have fun at home, we’ll deliver FOOD for you!! But can they deliver health? Probably Not!

But now, in pandemic situation we’ve realized value of good food and good health! We have realized value of “Home”. Everyone who was far from “Home” has flown back to their nest! Although the nest might not be that luxurious, however it gives the warmth of inner-peace and harmony. This incident has provoked us to re-start thinking again! We’ve started having a “dialogue” again, even with ourselves!

I truly understand and agree that post pandemic, life won’t be “back to normal” like before. Definition of “normal” will be reformed for every individual and for every family as well. Before pandemic, expenditures were controlled by e-commerce portals and marketing agencies! Yes, the Republic Day Sale, Big bash sale, Independence day sale, variety of offers in malls, tons of offers/coupon codes to be encashed in food outlets, grocery stores, electronic stores etc. Pandemic will leave footprint of paycuts due to losses incurred in this phase. This enforces people to THINK before they spend every penny here onwards!  This would have a cascading effect on decrease in demand, and hence industries functioning with higher capacity to fulfill earlier demand would be forced to do layoffs to survive!

But in this situation, we’ve only two options available – embrace depression and let everyone in family suffer, embrace the fact and rejuvenate! Experts believe that second option is not that easy and expect for the worse in near future.

I do not know much about these experts. But I know for sure that they do not know anything about the value of human motivation and determined efforts.

  • If experts were to be believed, after the total destruction in 2nd World War Japan had NO future. BUT the same nation in just 3 decades or so, made US cry at the market place.
  • If the experts were to be believed, Israel should have been wiped out from the world map by the Arabs, but the fact is different.
  • As per the rules of Aerodynamics, the Bumble Bee can NOT fly. But it flies, because it does not know the rules of Aerodynamics.
  • If the experts were to be believed, we should have been no-where in 1983 Cricket World Cup.
  • If the experts were to be believed Wilma Rudolf, the first American lady to win 4 Olympic Gold in Athletics , should not have been in a position to walk without braces, no question of running.
  • If the experts were to be believed Arunima Sinha can hardly lead a normal life. But she climbed the Mount Everest! Her journey to Mt. Everest must have been difficult than our journey today!

What’s common factor in all success stories mentioned above? None of them thought it’s impossible!! Nevertheless, it would have required tireless + determined + consistent efforts with a hope and ambition – “I’m going to make it!!” that might have helped them override the challenges that they came across.

At the end of the day, it’s a mind-game! It’s survival of the fittest! That’s why Wilma and Anurnima, although physically challenged, succeeded; and people with good physic, continue to complain! When Goals set with conscious mind, are accepted by sub-conscious mind, it makes miracles! Agree?

Recently there has been gossips taking place round the corner of WhatsApp university that this pandemic has pushed us minimum 25 years back! And to support this belief, most of the old television serials are now being re-telecasted, it’s giving a nostalgic feeling for most of the working class born before 90s. Overall “maahol” (surroundings) is giving people feel of being pushed three decades back!

But people are forgetting the fact that earlier, news papers and news played at 9pm – was the only source of information to get good and bad news happening around the world. In similar pandemic situations, people were staying in their homes with no newspapers or no television and no phones (landlines) and no basic facilities that we’ve available at our door step, even now!

Life was not that easy then!!

Current pandemic has come with a boon of Internet! You get to know, see whatever information you need across the world, whatever entertainment you wish to have or even enjoy games on your smartphones! If you don’t have smart phones, you have phones to call your loved one’s and ask about their well-being! At the end of the day, you are NOT lonely and helpless, there is help all around!

Having said that, this pandemic has also pushed us 20 years ahead!! Surprised?

India has emerged as one of the hottest market for digital TOOLS industry catering working and non-working class as well!

All of a sudden, everyone – right from a teenager to senior citizens have started having Zoom meetings! This infrastructure existed since 2011, but did anyone use it before? No!

All of a sudden, you’ve started receiving invites for the webinars being conducted on webinarjam. Most of them are free knowledge sharing sessions! Is it really ONLY for knowledge sharing? No, new marketing platform is emerging!! Gathering all right people under one (digital) roof and promoting their agendas! Are these webinar platforms being built during the pandemic – certainly NOT! They already existed since 2013!!

Asana and Slack – which are now used widely as work/project management and team communication tools are available since 2008 and 2009!! Did you know that?G Suite is a suite of cloud computing, productivity and collaboration tools, software and products developed by Google Cloud, first launched on August 28, 2006 as Google Apps for Your Domain.

So, it’s like OXYGEN was always in the air! Such a critical resource is FREELY AVAILABLE for everyone, but still some people need ventilators! And we’re from that category who never attempted to look for and utilize these resources; we were chasing to get the ventilators to breath!! Now, when world is at a pause, we’ve started realizing how many resources are available for us to use, but we overlooked them!

The question remains, what would be the impact of the COVID-19!

The good news in India is – how soon we control the spread of virus will determine how soon can we bounce back. The government should be applauded for decisive action in closing the down the borders and locking down the nation to control the widespread of the virus and hence we’ve survived stage-3 COVID-19 crisis.

In India, economy was heading towards recession even before COVID-19! Although the recession risk was absolutely real, it should not be taken as conclusion. But now, government should show similar reforms to stop the economy from stalling. Major upfront challenges are breakdowns in credit line, higher number of bankruptcies, resulting in job cuts and liquidity issues.

Recessions are usually abbreviated in two forms – V shape or L shape!

As the shape resonates, L shape is ugly, however, V shape is something we should aspire for! Most of the earlier recessions have been of V- shape.

People becoming conservative about spending, leads to fall in demands and hence impacts the industries due to imbalance in demand and supply ratio. Production halts, layoffs occur and it can go in vicious cycle.

However, the crisis usually can spur in adaption of new technologies! Best example is of China! SARS epidemic had started in 2002. They succeeded over it by 2004. People were no inclined to eCommerce pre-epidemic. However, post epidemic, people started preferring online shopping. Although Alibaba was formed in 1999, it emerged as revolutionary ecommerce platform in 2004!

As schools will be closed nation-wide for atleast a quarter now, can education domain see a smart break-through to e-learning platforms and can we expect all classes in the society to start adapting it?

Offcourse, we should hope for the best but prepare for the worse. V-shape recovery is possible scenario conceptually and practically as well. But for that, we need to start looking beyond the crisis. What are the opportunities or challenges that would arise that we can encash! Although world was moving towards globalization, there were few dominant players in the market. Now the situation is different. What if we adopt new technologies and processes faster while world is still at stand-still? Can we focus on finding advantage in adversity for our organization, our clients and our society?

The transformation of the organization with the help of technology can almost be a beginning of a new era for the organization, its workforce and their clients too!

Comment (1)

  1. Harshal Deshmukh

    That’s really awesome explanation. The example mentioned about webinar is so true, my parents are attending Shri Gajanan Maharaj Parayan from Webinar. There are so many activities conducted via whatsapp and shared through youtube channels.
    As said always you are full of positive vibes, reading this blog give such an optimistic feeling.

    April 15, 2020 at 7:03 am
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