The event industry has shown exceptional resilience in the face of unique challenges and difficulties. Lessons that will remain vital.
When life takes an unexpected turn, we often hear people say that Rome was not built in a day. It comes from a place of sobriety. Although the finish line is far from sight, every layered brick is one step closer to the desired goal.
When the Coronavirus pandemic first made its entry, it was broadcasted on news channels and various informative platforms. Life as we knew it would take an unexpected turn, and the only certainty would be that many things as we knew them would be uncertain. Businesses would have to come up with innovative ways to keep their doors open. Working from home would be the mandatory norm, even for the event industry. And shopping online would replace frequent visits to supermarkets and malls. The greatly anticipated 2020 was postponed to make way for life’s adjustments with the new virus.
Fear was at an all-time high, with physical human interaction at an all-time low. Depression and anxiety opened their doors to the public, and the solitude that was once known and used as a measure of punishment in correctional institutions became the daily bread. Corona was here to stay.
Mitigating The Risks
Lockdowns became the first line of defense, and at first, affected people seemed to be just numbers and stats. Soon those numbers became familiar names, and those names, in turn, became family close to home. Strategists may have seen it coming but not to the extent that it did. The colossal impact on businesses was unimaginable, and those that could operate from home offices were counted among the blessed. Some companies had to shut their doors permanently. Employees had to be furloughed or laid-off, and early retirements became a more feasible option as staying at home was a priority to keep safe and curb the spread.
Wearing a mask was not a suggestion or a fashion stunt. It became our new way of life. You could not leave the house without it; otherwise, you would be in direct contravention of the law. Curfew times were implemented to reduce the number of people outside their homes. As the number of cases increased, tighter restrictions were imposed. All these measures were set in place to wage war against the invisible but deadly virus.
Lessons Learned After Covid
We would have counted our blessings had we known how our lives would change unimaginably. We would not have been as “busy” as we used to be. Our coffee dates would be longer, hugs tighter, and saving would have been taken more seriously. We never truly understood how badly the deprivation of human interaction would weigh down on us.
Amid the chaos, I believe there is a glimmer of hope. Our lenses have been cleaned, and priorities ironed out. Our resilience as humanity has stood out. Despite the constant loss, we persevere. Business ideas were born, and individuals have become first-time entrepreneurs midway through a pandemic. There is solace in knowing that there is life during the hard times and there will be a life after. We must continue going.
Moving Forward With Resilience
Resilience is the astonishing ability to move forward despite having experienced adverse events. Creativity has been put to the test. In the famous words of Maya Angelo, “still, we rise.” The pandemic may have wreaked havoc, but as we lean into our inner strength and resilience, we will survive. Like the newspaper guy who lost his job found an opportunity to sell fresh foods and deliver them door to door to those that could not safely go outside themselves. That leap of faith opened avenues of income for him. Today he owns a well-established company birthed in a crisis but helping so many. He delivers anything and everything on a large scale and has successfully managed to branch out his business and employ individuals all around his city. His bravery was rewarded.
Resilience and persistence have a payday. The trick is not to cave in when the going gets tough.
Events professionals had to get creative to get revenue. Drive-through weddings and gigs became realities. Virtual showers and meetings as the new way of human interaction and celebration. Virtual events grew as venues shuttered.
Relying On Our Resilience
To survive and beat the Coronavirus, we need to rely on our resilience. We need to believe that our ideas will be day become a reality if we persist with them. The introduction of vaccinations can bring life back to normal. Maybe not the normal we had but a better sanitized normal. A new page and a clean start. We owe it to ourselves to push past the fear and uncertainty to see a bright future.
If the bird flu could not eradicate us, the big bad invisible virus will not either. We have learned through this pandemic to lean into sustainable ideas that can withstand uncertainty and fear. May our creativity anchor itself in relevance. Revolution and transformation will have to anchor our business decisions. We need to be swift enough to move with the times.
During this time, social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram have become adaptive ways to earn money from home. Being an influencer and content creator has proved to be a credible and sustainable career path.
Who would have known that sitting behind a computer desk in the comfort of your home could have an incredible impact on the world at large? Blogging and vlogging have become the modern way to spend the day with each other without putting ourselves at risk. These online interactions have aided to subside the surge of mental health issues. They can be listed as positive ways we have drawn strength from during this pandemic.
The end is not in sight, but we will keep layering a brick every hour if we must until we start to see Rome, as John Heywood said. Together we can beat this pandemic taking it one day at a time, one idea at a time, and one laugh at a time.