The past week has seen, in the wake of coronavirus scare, spate of announcements from companies asking employees to work from home and colleges moving courses online in an effort to reduce the risk of infection and contain the spread of virus from human interactions. First, shoutout to all those in the frontline fighting the battle to help people already infected and risking infecting themselves in the process. Second, prayers for people infected and trying to recover. Third, prayers for welfare of workers who cannot do their job from a remote location and are at higher risk of exposure to infection.
While working from home is not new in professions where the job can be done electronically the concept of large volume of employees and most of college education moving online is novel indeed. The announcement of national emergency with recommendation of social distancing has in effect forced everyone to find ways to go about their business in a different way. It’s going to be interesting to see how this new Business As Usual (BAU) under unusual circumstances works out, especially considering there is uncertainty on how long this will be the norm for doing things. Willy-nilly all of us are going to be affected whether we are active or passive participants. Which throws up some interesting questions
1) Will multiple people working/studying under one roof called home result in individuals feeling invasion of their space in some way?
2) Will it result in increased quality family time due to much higher interaction between family members and bring families closer?
3) Will there be more frequent trips to the pantry/kitchen snack counter due to more easy availability and lesser distance to walk?
4) Will network bandwidth be a bottleneck as members of families compete for a slice of it for their work or study?
5) Will grocery stores witness a continuing surge in buying or see a drop as people work through the extra foodstuff they have bought in recent times?
6) Will snacking companies need to work overtime due to increased demand as people seek comfort in snacks/chocolates/ice creams?
7) Will oil prices at gas station depress more due to supply exceeding reduced demand?
8) Will businesses like restaurants, movie theaters, sporting events that need people coming in go belly up?
9) Will students’ grades improve helped by parent/s being around to help?
10) Will employee productivity increase thanks to potential help from their children? 🙂 I know of one co-worker who took credit for all the hard work done by his dog jumping on the keyboard when he was away 😉 https://therajblog.com/2019/03/02/did-the-dog/
11) Will all the forced changes ensure policymakers do a better job of preparing for situations like this or shift blame by pointing fingers at others?
12) Will this become the new normal way of doing business?
Questions, questions and more questions. No immediate answers but there should be more than enough data in a few weeks to analyze how all this works out. As for myself, I cannot get away in the near future claiming I had a bath or ate my lunch on time 😦 Life is getting tough but I will hang on 😀