I don’t forecast often, but I can’t help but think about how this virus will change us, as a culture.
What I see is that things that were “optional” are now becoming essential. Here’s are a few things I expect to see go big in 2020:
1. More work-from-home opportunities. Yeah, if you work in retail or manufacturing, you’ll still be driving to work. But I’ve managed a virtual team in my company for seven years. It is wonderful. Now a bunch of mainstream companies are going to offer more of it, too.
2. Netflix, Hulu, TV, podcasts and entertainment services in general are going to have to keep up with demand. Talkshows will record to empty audiences. But they will still reach your living room. Binge-watching is about to hit new levels.
3. We all knew healthcare was broken. Now we get to see what needs fixing first. We are a clever society. We tolerate icky things when they happen slowly and insidiously, like de-enrolling people from healthcare year after year, allowing opioid companies to distribute unethically, or raising premiums to unaffordable levels. But when the scales tip, we tend to act fast. Look for healthcare and economic debate to dominate the news for awhile. And maybe even get fixed!
4. Amazon, HelloFresh, Sunbasket, pharmacies that deliver, and all those other services that bring goods to your home will grow even bigger. Imagine a world with 50% Amazon trucks on the empty roads, coming to deliver food to a home near you. That’s actually possible.
5. People will be playing it safe. Let’s face it, we’re shaken. No one is going to be changing jobs. Companies won’t be hiring. We are all going to be staying put, waiting for the signal that we can safely emerge from the cave.
6. And because we’re playing it safe…more innovative side-gigs. Yep! Hard to believe? Think about it: you’re suddenly not thinking about quitting your crappy job. Maybe you’re even worried about losing it. So you think instead, “Maybe it’s time I finally get Grandma’s soup recipes out there on the Internet. I bet I could charge for that.” You and millions of others are going to be thinking how things you know are valuable, and how that can translate to extra change. Thousands of micro businesses are going to be born. A new age of online creativity will come from this and solo-preneurs will flourish.
7. Anything that creates virtual connections will do even better. Companies who were already using web-based conferencing will double-down on it. If you do summits, online trainings, or webinars, your attendance may be hurting now, but it’s going to rise bigger than before. If you write ebooks, now is your moment to finish your next one.
8. I can’t guarantee this one, but my hope is: we will love each other more. The last few decades have seen us really divide, hating one another’s politics and person-hoods. Big things remind us that our future is shared. Our lives are shared. Indulging in gridlock is what you do when you can afford it. But when all our lives are at risk, we begin to compromise. And that’s when we grow.
* * *
I would love to hear your comments on this article. Please leave one below!
P.S. Flowdreams to help you feel relaxed and positive about the future (as opposed to afraid) include the Restored, Aligned and In Control Playlist.