2020…Not What We Expected


New Year's EveLooking back on 2020, who would have thought that we would have had a year like this. Personally, I thought that 2020 would be a breakthrough year for me, but that was not to be.

What we learned from 2020 (in no specific order):

  • Masks, social distancing, and handwashing are a must.
  • Travelling can be a challenge. I was in LA when COVOD-19 broke out in March, and getting back home was interesting. I was concerned that LAX would be shut down (it wasn’t, but that was not clear at that time).
  • And now that we cannot leave the country, more road trips are in order.
  • Tied to this is that we all have something to contribute. I was amazed at what people decided to do with their spare time this year. I spoke to many people who decided to do new projects around the house, pick up new hobbies, and learn new things.
  • I currently have about 8 different programs on my computer for entering online meetings. I suspect there are a great many more.
  • Tied to this, there are times when we just need to speak to somebody.
  • People are going hungry and possibly will be out of their homes. This is one of the worst aspects of this year. On the other hand, generosity is alive and well, and we (and others) chose to help out here wherever possible.
  • Social events are radically different, and I am not sure if we will ever get back to the way we were before.
  • Tied to this, I feel bad for the bars and restaurants. It is hard to hit your overhead in that business without significant traffic.
  • The air was much cleaner (in general), and I hope that will continue. People are definitely driving less (I know that I am), and hopefully, this will have a positive impact on our planet.
  • My phone time actually went down. Well, other than the 2 weeks we spent in an Airbnb….
  • Sometimes, taking a break is positive…
  • And thank goodness for essential workers and teachers.

So, with that said, I have to wonder what is likely in 2021 (in no specific order):

  • Many businesses will greatly reduce their office space. I have a client that has reduced their space by 75% and likely will continue having many people work from home. This is more common than not at this point as organizations have found out that people can (successfully) work from home.
  • While some retailers prospered (Go Lowe’s), many were hurt, many went out of business, and many are now only online. There are numerous ones where the stores are open, but they prefer you to pick up curbside. We can be sure that retail will be very different, but what will happen will be worth seeing how it unfolds. I think this will be especially true in supermarkets, where fewer people are willing to enter the stores (at least for now).
  • Tied to the above, I think we will (eventually) see more people walking a few blocks or a few minutes to pick up what they need.
  • I also think that people will do more with their homes than ever before.
  • On the flip side, I feel that there will be a huge uptick in travel at some point. It will be interesting to see where people do go when they do travel.
  • I am hoping we will see a reevaluation of older talent. There are times when perspective does matter.
  • Hopefully, people will continue to be generous, and we will also continue making strides with the environment.
  • We need to continue to be kind…

So that is it for me. What do you think?

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