As businesses begin to reopen, do you feel comfortable visiting them? If you have been out at all to stores or businesses other than the grocery store, you are seeing many new restrictions and rules. For example, some places are making your wear masks while others insist you wash your hands upon entering. Others are restricting the number of people allowed in the business, thus making for long lines outside. When you visit small businesses, remember they are doing their best. Please give them the space to make these restrictions so that they can resume conducting business in a safe way. Essentially, pack your patience!
How are you preparing to respond to customers who may not be comfortable with the safety practices and precautions you have put into place? You will not be able to make everyone happy. You must be patient when clients or customers give you their opinion. You can try to accommodate their needs but you might not be able to.
If you are working at home virtually, patience is further needed as you are still balancing kids now on summer break. The uncertainty of whether school will return in the fall lingers and looms over you like a dark cloud. Many vacations, business trips, and events have been cancelled or postponed. Remember to continue to be gracious, patient, and flexible with your work clients, your family and yourself. There are just too many unknowns right now. Patience will be needed more than ever.
In addition to these unknowns, there are issues with this new normal of remote work. I have attended a couple events on Zoom recently where there were technical or trolling issues. In both cases, I wanted to think, “how have they not figured out how to use Zoom yet?” But then I reminded myself that not everyone uses Zoom as much as I do and their issues may be legitimate ones that I simply have not had to face. Patience...
What will the new normal look like?
No one really knows. It cracks me up when friends point out (with such certainty!) how they think people are going to behave going forward.
I cannot predict the future but here is what I hope:
- When holding in-person events, people will include an online option. Having a farewell/promotion/wedding/shower/birthday? Include an online option for those who cannot attend.
- We will go back to congregating in large groups, including eating together but we will be more mindful of washing our hands and allowing for larger spaces
- Employers will recognize the value of remote work and implement those practices for the long term
- We will get schools the appropriate resources both in person and remotely to prepare our children to be active members of our society
- We will interact safely with each other knowing now a little bit more about personal hygiene and physical spacing
- We will be more tolerant of work/life balance, to include being at peace with family members, children or pets in the background (or foreground!) on virtual meetings.
- We will have more patience because this experience will have forced us to practice patience. It will come more easily
The more important question to ask is what do you want your new normal to look like? How do you want your work and life to balance? What can you do to achieve that balance?
If you want your company to stay virtual or at least be a hybrid team. Check out our Remote Strong webinar series on tips for setting up your remote team for success.