This bug is an adaptive and emergent organism with global reach. (Is it spreading faster than Facebook? Has someone done the math?) We are not going to be sure anytime soon if the bug is truly contained. I am starting to believe we should prepare for the bug to be with us all 2020, and for years after.
In spite of the negative fallout , this crisis may have an upside for some teams. It may actually strengthen the competitive advantage of some organisations vis-a-vis others. These advantages will be sector, industry or geography agnostic. They will extend from qualities of teams irrespective of origin, size or industry. I'd like to discuss some of these qualities here.
There was life before COVID-19 and life after it. This is a landmark shift in human affairs as we know it. The post-COVID world's new normal may be ongoing, unpredictable disruption of face-of-face collaboration. This could prompt a major behavior change in how these teams operate. They will then decide to switch to remote / digital collaboration as de facto mode. The convenience and predictability of remote will outweigh the benefits of co-located teams. Being co-located will begin to seem arcane.
This outbreak is an inflection point. It could mark a behavioural shift toward large-scale digital remote collaboration. The shift is away from remote collaboration as 'gap filler' between co-located work. Remote becomes de facto; co-located only when absolutely necessary. It is the basis of an emergent workforce. In this new world, the transacting parties don't feel the need to meet. Many won't ever meet in person during the collaboration / project process, or after. like in some Hollywood movie with Leonardo DiCaprio.
Why this shift? The superbug crisis has outright eliminated the co-located option. In doing so, it has revealed co-located's painful, time-consuming dimension. Some teams realise this naturally. They change tactics to actually become more effective than they were before the outbreak.
These teams are somehow more prepared to be NOT reliant on co-located-based collaboration. These teams are also faster and better when working online and remotely.
Such teams will be able to connect with other teams with similar characteristics across geographies, forming new ecosystems.
What would the key qualities - the intrinsic strengths - of such teams be; what resilience borne of this crisis may come from:
Update: 17th March - Researchers in Finland seemed to echo these thoughts.
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