As lockdown becomes the new normal, we are all migrating to digital, finding new ways to work, to support our customers and driving as much business as we can. Much of the chat I see online asks, when will we return to the ‘old normal’.
But is this what we should be preparing for?
Even with restrictions lifted and customer confidence back, there is no reason to think there will ever be a return to the old ways of doing business. We have learnt new skills, opened new channels and ways of communicating. We have created opportunities through virtual engagement, and we are starting to push the boundaries of creativity. So why would we even want to return to the old normal? We are starting to get good at this!
Before the pandemic, we heard the cries ‘retail is dead’, ‘online is killing the high street’ and ‘customers want services on demand’. We have seen the writing on the wall, it was only a matter of time. That is why I believe we should not be looking at the long term, the long term will look after itself. It’s the mid-term we should be planning for. What does a partial lockdown mean? The amount of time we may be in a hybrid between full social isolation and no restrictions will probably be significantly longer than isolation itself. So, mid-term is my focus.
How do we keep creating new ways to engage remotely, and how do we augment these with face to face support? There will never be anything to replace personal one on one customer service. But by supporting it with an integrated virtual service – we will be delivering the best of both worlds.
The current situation is terrible, so many lives lost and businesses failing. However, what will come from this will be stronger and more resilient. Our business has been lucky enough to have planned for this digital transformation, working side by side with our clients for some time. But to those who are just finding new ways, let this be the evolution of your business and not just a short-term reaction.