Every once in a lifetime or maybe in two, an event occurs that changes all existing mental frameworks and brings in a new reality. As we emerge out of the covid tunnel – at worst, battered and grief-stricken and at best, shaken and anxious, the question is are we #BackStronger?
The uniqueness of humanity is that we learn – from adversity as much as we do from prosperity, challenges, or opportunities, and from sorrow or joy.
And there is no doubt that we have learnt lessons – and valuable ones at that – of kindness, empathy, fortitude, community service, resilience, and agility. Our characters have been burnished with the force of what the world went through. Despite all this, the question remains are we ready to be #BackStronger?
The world that we step into will be permanently changed – it will be a world of technology on steroids and anti/anxiety pills. And as we step into this world – individuals, organizations, and societies will need to work at ramping up their strength and distilling the lessons learnt.
To come #BackStronger there will be three key areas that we will need to focus.
For far too long, we have focused on the external world – on having more and looking good. Our leadership styles have been about results we achieve in a financial year and the price of the stock that we own. Our community citizenship is all about our own condominium communities and the clubs we frequent.
Now to be #BackStronger, we need to journey within to reach out to our families, our teams and our communities. Self-care and mental well-being will be the cornerstones to come #BackStronger.
The second area of focus is looking at organizational cultures. Organizations have been competitive and ruthless. Toxic workplaces have thrived despite company-wide inclusion and equity programs. There have been struggles with employee engagement and attrition. Teams have had to deal with emotionally challenged leadership.
Our workplaces and our expectations of them have changed. What has come into sharp light is that team members have decided that they have choices and they are making them. The ability to maintain a humanistic ecosystem while driving results with agility and resilience will be the good business practices for businesses to be #BackStronger.
The third area of focus is the relationship we humans have with our communities of residence, cities, countries and the planets. We have been greedy in our use of resources and the way we have denuded the environment. We have run through the gifts of this planet like we have another one on standby. Our self-centeredness as a species, where our own pursuit of happiness trumped everything else, has brought us to the brink of destruction and extinction.
As HUMANS, we need to be kinder and consider the legacy that we are leaving behind for our future generations. We need to be sustainably responsible individuals, organizations and communities who are committed to recharging our planet to be #BackStronger.
The human memory is short – we forget pain and sorrow. Perhaps that is our coping mechanism to move forward. But the lessons we have learnt in the last 18 months can make us better people, a better organization and a better community. For us to be #BackStronger, these are lessons that need to be etched into our DNA.