THE LONG ROAD TO COMEBACK
We have discussed threadbare how COVID-19 impacted businesses, big and small, regional and international. As the days prolong to months and the year dawns to a close, the bubbling enthusiasm of the first lockdown seems like a distant dream. Months of staying at or working from home, adjusting to the schedules of the spouse and / or kids, speaking to colleagues over phone, balancing chores around the house with working around the clock to meet customer needs, have possibly made even the strongest among us question, is there a comeback?
In the recent past, we have seen several decisions being made to bring workers back to their workplace and restart the wheels of the economy, and the battlelines between lives and livelihood are being freshly drawn. Businesses are reopening, wholesale markets are seeing footfalls, cafes and food courts are starting up, and some of us have started waving to a few colleagues across the office floor. Though for a lot of companies opening up is still quite a way off, wheels are already in motion in creating policies and procedures for a new normal.
It’s not that the disease has vanished. On the contrary, we are slowly moving up to lead the global charts in terms of infection numbers and almost 100,000 are contracting it every day. Although, the recovery rate is positive with similar numbers getting better daily.
So, what has changed? Possibly, the perspective. COVID-19 is not being seen as an unknown enemy that could stop us in our tracks, but something that can be fought with proper protections and good habits. We may or may not agree, but the fight has given us many new habits, a lot of which may have lasting impact on our behavior and general cleanliness. Also, the fight has given us resilience, to fight with change, to stay strong and move with the flow, and emerge victorious when the storm is over.
This month’s word is Resilience. Self-reliance is a fine sentiment, but staying the course, changing and redefining oneself to survive, putting everything in line every single day, and not bending under so much pressure, is true resilience. And millions of Indians are displaying it every day in the fields and markets, on the local trains in Mumbai, in the hospitals and nursing homes, aboard the trucks from Amritsar to Kanyakumari, in the police stations, and innumerable microcosms of our life.
As in life, so in project management, resilience pays a key role. There would not be a project manager who hasn’t faced changes in specifications or scope, timelines or quality. Do we stay rigid in the path of change, or do we flow with it, resolute and resilient till we overcome the obstacles and meet the project goal? It’s how we react to changes that makes us better managers, today and always.
Thanks and Best Wishes
Subramanyam Krishnamurthy (Mani), PMP
Editorial Content Credit : Himadri Sekhar Chowdhury, PMP