“It's times like these you learn to live again.”
-Times Like These, Foo Fighters
The world has changed in just a few short months since the start of 2020. What promised to be a stellar year full of exciting opportunities and growth for organizations has suddenly shifted into one of the great challenges of our lifetime.
At Inspire Software, our mission is to help people and organizations thrive in their everyday work life. As our global community shifts to survival mode, our mindset at Inspire remains the same, to help people lead and collaborate in effective ways toward common objectives—no matter what challenges we are facing.
As the world engages in the COVID-19 challenge, Inspire will be actively involved in promoting healthy collaboration and effective leadership to solve business, personal, and global problems during these challenging times and beyond. We remain optimistic, and we're here to help engage in productive conversations about this global challenge as we all pivot to new realities in our personal and professional lives.These are unprecedented times, and employees will be looking to #CompanyLeaders for direction, support, motivation, and reassurance. Here’s a note from @InspireSoftware about how they’re banding together during the #COVID19 outbreak:Tweet This!
To help elevate the social and news media conversations unfolding, our Inspire team has put together a brief list of early lessons we’ve learned in this rapidly changing world.
Be Prepared, Be Ready to Pivot
Most of us believe we will be ready when a challenge or crisis comes our way. But, the reality is that when the first wave of change hits us, our plans can be quickly shaken, and we have to be able quickly adapt to new realities. Who knew toilet paper would become the new gold standard? In business and in life, it’s always good to have a plan, but even better to be prepared to pivot our plans quickly and to adjust when necessary.
For example, I was taken aback by the rush to the grocery store and the stockpiling of food and resources. One customer had an entire grocery cart full of milk (follow the logic on that one). My immediate thought, especially after restaurants closed, was that the fast food establishments that already had an efficient order fulfillment process in place would be able to thrive. I was fascinated by the efficiency and fluidity of our local Chick-Fil-a drive through, which is used to long car lines and high volumes of orders outside of the store. They often have employees walking down the car line taking orders with mobile devices. They already have a process in place to deal with a rush of drive-thru customers, and by default, they have become a vital resource for food in “locked down” communities across the United States.
The Virtual Economy has Fully Arrived
Speaking of being prepared, most organizations have been crawling toward a more virtual and mobile workforce. Yet, even in the past five years we have wrestled with the debate over how productive we can really be at home, balancing life and work. Now suddenly, ready or not, we’ve been thrust into the new reality of a virtual workforce. And the companies that are ready for this new reality will thrive during this crisis and beyond.
At Inspire, our team has been over 50% virtual for several years, so the collaboration has been seamlessly flowing in a 100% virtual capacity, thanks in large part to our own Inspire software performance platform — as well as Zoom and MicroSoft Teams software solutions. The video collaboration has become less awkward and more manageable as we experience this new reality. Though virtual will never truly be the same as face-to-face meetings, it has become an efficient way to collaborate and get things done while adjusting our business objectives.
Home is Where Our Hearts Are
One of the unintended delights of this crisis is that we have gotten a peek into some of our colleagues’ homes, and not in a weird or awkward way. We’ve seen kids waving, cats jumping, and interesting pieces of artwork hanging from living room walls. While I’ve always been a fan of keeping home life private, I admit, I think it’s been pretty cool to see a more intimate side of colleagues and business partners. In some ways, it has made them all the more real, and has offered an opportunity to be a little more human when pursuing our business objectives together.
Stay in Touch
One of the strange narratives to all of this is the continued access to technology and our ability to communicate long distance. I’ve reached out to numerous family and friends over the past week, just to see how they’re doing. Many others have reached out to me. In many ways, this crisis has caused us to hit the pause button on our busy lives and reach out to others for a quick check-in. Whether it is a neighbor, the youth sports team parents, or family members you haven’t talked to in some time, now is a great opportunity to reach out and connect with others, even if it is only virtually. Just knowing someone cares and is interested in how you’re doing can be an uplifting gift and meets one of our core psychological needs of connecting with others.
We’re All in This Together
The simple fact remains, but cannot be understated, in times like these, we are all in this together. COVID-19 doesn’t discriminate against race, gender, worldview, or culture. Now is the opportunity to be kind to others (even on social media), praise your kids for something simple and thoughtful they’ve done, thank a co-worker for being a valued team member, get to know a stranger, practice better hygiene fundamentals, and simply be grateful for the things you have.
Inspire software is founded on an abundance mindset--that together we can do great things. We believe in elevating the human experience and value meaningful conversations and effective collaboration no matter what challenge we are facing. In the spirit of that collaboration, we’d like to hear from you on what you’re learning and what you need during times like these. Please feel free to commit, challenge, or request help, on our social pages or feel free to get in touch with us to talk about your needs at this time.