“When it comes to my career, I feel like we are about to begin playing a very big game — a global game — of musical chairs. The music will start playing and when it stops, there will be a lot of people with no place to sit.”
I spent the day Thursday talking to clients. Not surprisingly, everyone was unsettled — as a nation, we are struggling mightily, albeit in a fragmented siloed fashion, to slam the lid on Covid-19, some of the political rhetoric is becoming more unhinged, very successful consultants, including executive recruiters, are sitting around waiting and the economic news in the US was historically, devastatingly bad. There are a few bright spots in certain industries but they are not sufficient to fuel broad economic growth.
Meanwhile, I learned that a group of highly respected scientists and health policy experts, meeting virtually with business leaders, painted what is probably the most realistic picture for the end of this deadly virus and a timeframe for when we can hope the economy will begin to recover. That, too, was was unsettling.
The one word I kept hearing during my conversations with friends and colleagues was “transformative” as in this crisis will be transformative on “our economy, “my industry”, “on healthcare”… People are unsettled because they are struggling to decipher whether transformation will be a good or bad thing in their lives.
This is the time to begin planning for your transformed post-Covid-19 life.
This level of sweeping uncertainty can have a paralyzing effect on our decision-making process. While that is understandable, this is exactly the wrong time to slip into a shutdown mode. Now, more than any time in your career, you must focus your creative, critical thinking capabilities to think about and prepare for the future. Yes, there are plenty of dark clouds but the sun has not, and will not, disappear. This is the time to begin planning for your transformed post-Covid-19 life.
If you wait until you can see the light at the end of the tunnel, you will find yourself at the back of the line, scrambling for scraps. This is your call to action.
© 2020 John Gregory Self