One thing we can be certain of in this new world is that things will never be the same and the way we interact with friends, family and business colleagues will take on a totally new dimension. We have most definitely learnt through the Covid-19 experience that although we miss human interaction as a society, we can still get things done.
Certainly, there have been challenges and the United Kingdom economy is feeling strain of the virus in much the same way a patient might, it is on life support!
Unemployment, low productivity and fiscal underperformance dominate the news people are worried about jobs, education and healthcare, the government is worried about how long it can prop up an economy without access to the necessary means, and yet still under the circumstances where we can and where there has been a will the people of the United Kingdom have adapted. It has been tough, and it has been inconvenient, but we have adapted to the inconvenience and adopted the new normal.
Adapting is one thing, but actually adopting a new way of life is where Covid -19 has been a catalyst for change, can we consider any of it positive?
Is there anything positive we can draw from what now amounts to almost 9 weeks in lock down?
Of course, it’s great to be home with our families, eating meals together, watching the same TV shows, taking walks and even doing online work outs as a unit. All this is something unfamiliar to many due to the pre-Corona Virus rate race. We have been driven by our diaries, pushed by meetings and governed by the economy which is now on its knees.
In this Covid -19 driven world, communications technology, the very same catalyst that meant we spent less quality time with our loved ones now has a far more positive impact. It used to be too easy to send an SMS home saying, “don’t make dinner for me, working late” or a bulk SMS to friends saying, “can’t make the pub, have a meeting”. We would hide behind the technology in order to keep pace with what we felt was expected of us in a world self-absorbed with driving on at all cost.
The good news is we are getting by, under trying circumstances and challenging times, some might say as a society we are actually thriving on a human level. The depth of our relationships is deeper, the appreciation of those we know, and love is richer and in an ironic twist of fate it’s the very same communications technology that has allowed us to focus on these relationships. Our mobile phones not only enable us to stay in touch, but they empower us to stay in control.
It is debatable as to whether we would have coped so well in lock down were it not for the control our mobile devices empowered us with. At a basic level, voice and video communication have enabled us to stay in touch with family and friends we cannot meet and be with in person. As a society our access to mobile communications technology has in no small way contributed to the positive manner with which we have responded to the global pandemic crises. On a more transactional level however the world has been as close as it’s ever been and e commerce has ensured we have food, appliances, clothing, insurance, banking and a raft other essential products and services. These products and services benefit from the existing legacy of successful secure transactional activity we have experienced working with them in the past. We are comfortable responding to our banks SMS with a yes or no when commenting on fraudulent behavior, we are happy in the knowledge that we can change the delivery time of a parcel with a simple text message, and who has not received an SMS reminding us to read the meter to avoid a higher gas bill.
Communications technology as ensured that the complexities of life can continue and that as a society under duress, we can focus on the things that are most important. It has been a stressful time for everyone, the entire world not just our local neighborhoods are adapting and adopting to the new normal but one thing is certain the familiarity and security of sending and receiving a texts whether confirming a bank transfer or a Deliveroo Take away has made it all the more tolerable.