Things are different than they were a year ago. This is a huge understatement! The arrival of COVID 19 and the effect on our lives worldwide has been immense. My business coaching practice in the Woodlands and in Houston has given me an observation point to see many businesses and how they have responded to the new world that COVID 19 has wrought.
The great news is that creativity, when it comes to survival is alive and well. The bad news is that in many instances it is not enough to survive. Each business, so to speak, is its own individual boat. When COVID 19 first arrived, some boats were already in a safe harbor. A safe harbor is a place where their business is not going to be severely affected. They are going to be profitable and survive. They will change because of safety concerns as to how they do business but overall, they are in good shape.
The next business boat is the one who was out at sea and experienced some stormy turbulence, but they were able to make it to the safe harbor and survive. They were able to develop new sailing skills and disciplines to get through. There were some rough spots, but they are going to be okay.
Then there were business boats that were farther out to sea. As a result, in attempting to navigate getting to a safe harbor they experienced more of the storm and larger waves. Some of these boats were able to make it. Unfortunately, some took on too much water and capsized. They will no longer be with us.
I’d like to focus on the ones that capsized and did not make it. Some were already weak, and the smallest negative change was going to cause them to spring a leak and take on too much water.
Then there were those that were strong. Yet, because of government mandates regarding COVID 19 safety they could not be open or their ability to do business was severely limited. In the United States, the hospitality industry which includes restaurants, hotels, bars, travel and more was the focus on government mandates. As a result, many of these businesses are gone and lives ruined.
The sad part for me is that the government was trying to do good and yet they got in the business of picking winners and losers. And, when it comes to mandates on mask wearing and social distancing as far as groups of people getting together there was no consistency.
You could not go to outdoor concerts. Yet, it was okay to get arm in arm to protest and riot. The inconsistencies are indisputable facts. Because we are human there will be inconsistencies. The bigger point is that individuals and businesses have lost faith in our local governments. We have lost trust. And when we lose trust it makes it even harder to come together not just as individuals and businesses, but for the common good.
What will be the lasting impact? Yes! It is too early to tell what it will be. Trust needs to be restored. If, when, and how that will happen remains to be seen. My wish for all of you is that as we move forward that your boat continues to survive, find safe harbors and ultimately thrive.