- Let’s face the fact: many of us are quick to blame Covid-19 pandemic for the mess we are in yet even before the pandemic we were fighting epic existential battles.
- Some industries were worse hit than others.
- For example, the print media and most retail businesses conjure the images captured so well in 1872 Lewis Carroll’s fiction, Through the Looking-Glass.
These are scary times for most business owners and managers. Even before the outbreak of Covid-19, their track record of dealing with modern challenges such as digital disruption was not good.
Let’s face the fact: many of us are quick to blame Covid-19 pandemic for the mess we are in yet even before the pandemic we were fighting epic existential battles.
Some industries were worse hit than others. For example, the print media and most retail businesses conjure the images captured so well in 1872 Lewis Carroll’s fiction, Through the Looking-Glass.
In this classic fantasy Alice meets the red queen and they begin to run together. Alice is surprised that no matter how fast they ran, they always stay in the same place: “Well, in our country,” said Alice, still panting a little, “you’d generally get to somewhere else — if you run very fast for a long time, as we’ve been doing.” “A slow sort of country!” said the queen. “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!”
Just like in Lewis imaginative world, many businesses in the last decade have been surviving by ‘running’ very fast to remain afloat in the same position.
They are suffering from impact of technological revolution that has literary changed the way people live and shop. Covind-19 is a mere catalyst that has speeded up the process settling most people in the new digital ecosystem.
Going forward most deals will take place within this ecosystem and anyone who does not adapt to operate in the digital ecosystem fade into oblivion.
Medical experts have warned us that Covid-19 is most lethal to old people as well as those living with underlying health conditions such as diabetes and heart problems.
The young and healthy individuals are able to fight the virus well even without medical intervention.
We have the same scenario in the business world. Businesses with underlying conditions such as chronic mismanagement, internal and external inefficiencies and weak business models are hardest hit and unlikely to survive these hard times.
Currently there are several giants that are in ICU fighting for life and their demise will definitely leave thousands of people jobless. Major airlines, hotels, retailers and distributors are laying off workers in huge numbers.
But there is good news. Most of those losing jobs are young and most adapted to survive in digital ecosystem. If they don’t waste precious time staring at the closed door and fail to see another one that is wide open they will find opportunities to launch startups and succeed.
The young businesses that are founded on digital ecosystem have the highest chance of surviving beyond this pandemic.
This gives hope that the world is not coming to an end. It’s one generation that is passing the baton to the next. History bear witness that anytime such a thing happens there is a phenomenal shake up and casualties.
Mr Kiunga is a business trainer and the author of The Art of Entrepreneurship: Strategies to Succeed in a Competitive Market. [email protected]