COVID-19: Every cloud has a silver lining

Guillaume de Villiers
on 9 Apr 2020

The world is facing uncharted waters. With COVID-19 still spreading rapidly around the globe, most people and businesses are uncertain of the future. The global order as we know it has been turned upside down. Everyone is affected, whether it’s physically, mentally, socially, or economically.

For South Africans, the actions taken by our government may seem harsh at first glance, but they have been timely and necessary. Considering the number of citizens with compromised immune systems, South Africa could face an abnormally high mortality rate without firm intervention. For this reason, our government’s decisive actions have been welcomed by most. In fact, South Africa has been internationally praised for a ruthlessly efficient fight against coronavirus by some.

Among all the reports of doom and gloom related to the pandemic, there is light at the end of the tunnel. As recently expressed by Alan Knott-Craig, “South Africa might just get lucky” due to the pandemic. We’ve been granted the perfect opportunity to reform our global reputation and mend our country’s internal divides. For the first time in our democracy, politicians stand united, demonstrating the importance to come together as a country. Socially and economically, we have a golden ticket to set a new precedent in the name of progress. 

COVID-19 is forcing us to re-imagine our economic landscape. From musicians live streaming their performances, to doctors consulting online. Businesses should embrace the current climate as an opportunity to evolve the way organisations are structured. For the first time, many organisations are forced to work remotely, utilising an array of online services to transform their day-to-day operations. With colleagues working from home, managers will need to rethink autocratic strategies and develop a culture of trust and autonomy among colleagues. Right now, we have a once in a lifetime chance to shape the future workplace.

Working remotely from the Seychelles

Every company, big and small, must adapt their procedures and support each other to survive. We are all interdependent, and we are collectively responsible for responding to the pandemic. Let’s adapt our lifestyles, businesses, and social lives, and become a role model to the world. If there’s one thing South Africans do best, it’s to overcome challenges. We’ve done it before and we will do it again. After all, every cloud has a silver lining.

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