While COVID-19 vaccinations are proceeding, there is a chance to return to normal life within the next months. Perhaps now is a good time to reflect on what positives the corona crisis has also brought us and to venture an outlook into the post-Corona era.
For instance, we report on a recent study from the Harvard Business Review, according to which many people and companies have now been able to build up a healthy degree of resilience.
Following that, we present another study regarding the trends which have changed society in 2020 and which will contribute to a “New Normal” even after the COVID-19 crisis.
In our guest article, resilient jobs during COVID-19 will be reviewed and discussed by our guest writer. Following that, a freelance HR expert will be sharing her experiences of how she supports national and international companies with their HR work. In our freelancer joke at the end, we then tell the story of a service provider who unsuccessfully tries to claim his outstanding payments directly from the managing director.
As always, I hope you enjoy reading this issue and, of course, I hope you do good business!
Having hopefully survived the worst of the Corona crisis, we have been given, not entirely willingly, the gift of resilience. Resilience is a process by which individuals respond to challenges by adjusting their behaviour.
The Harvard Business Review recently published two studies on resilience. One study looked at sources of resilience, methods for assessing resilience and the best ways to build resilience in oneself, employees and colleagues. A second study surveyed 25 000 entrepreneurs, freelancers and professionals in 25 countries to uncover global and socio-demographic differences in resilience.
According to both studies, resilience is hardly dependent on gender, age group or nationality, but there are some surprising correlations:
First finding: the more a person was exposed, the higher their resilience. People who had 5 or more connections to people who had COVID-19 were on average almost four times more resilient than those who had no or only one connection. This suggests that resilience is developed and strengthened precisely in the face of suffering and adversity.
Second finding: the more real or substantial the threat to a person, the more resilient they become. People who had experienced multiple changes (5 or more) in their workplace were 13 times more likely to be highly resilient than those who had experienced no change or only one change. The changes considered here were e.g. working hours, income levels, higher use of technology, redundancies, etc. This suggests that resilience is built especially when faced with unexpected change.
Third finding: people are particularly able to cope with adversity and adapt to difficult circumstances when they have transparent, truthful and direct information. This applies equally to companies, the self-employed and employees.
Resilience is often associated with other strengths such as determination, perseverance and the ability to grow, qualities that are essential especially in professional and business life. Resilience enables us to recover quickly from sources of stress and difficulties and to regenerate mentally healthy afterwards. Our ability to deal with unexpected challenges and life changes grows with each experience and we emerge stronger from crises.
COVID-19 is far from the only source of resilience in our lives. Many other difficult situations help us to develop resilience throughout our lives. Let us use resilience as a special power that we carry within us to shine brightly in the darkest times.
The year of Corona, 2020, has led to numerous sustainable changes. This has affected working and living environments as well as consumer behaviour and economic life. The world in 2021 will thus look rather unfamiliar.
The global consulting firm Accenture has identified seven trends in its Fjord Trends study that will contribute to a New Normal even after the COVID-19 crisis. According to the study, the pandemic forced companies, freelancers and workers to explore new avenues and question old entrenched ways of doing things. The result is these seven trends:
Trend 1: Collective displacement: The way we do many things, where and how we do them, changed, disrupting our usual comforts. Shops were closed, meeting places no longer worked and visits to the stadium and museum were no longer possible. Organisations had to and still have to find new ways to communicate with people and deliver brand experiences remotely in a different physical and social context.
Trend 2: Do it yourself Innovation: Innovation is not only driven by technology and devices but is also a product of the ingenuity of people in difficult conditions. Companies also need to rethink their approaches to innovation by offering tools rather than mandating solutions and by empowering people to become more creative in how they live.
Trend 3: Sweet teams are made of this: For years, technology has reshaped our relationship with work, working hours and workspaces. This change has radically accelerated in 2020, forcing employers and employees to rethink. Many employees wonder why they should still go to the office. There are many new possibilities for what the future of work could look like.
Trend 4: Interaction wanderlust: As we spend countless hours in front of screens interacting with the world, we notice a certain sameness that comes from template-like design in digital. More and more people are struggling with screen fatigue. Companies need to rethink design, content, audience and interaction to bring more excitement and joy to screen work.
Trend 5: Liquid infrastructure: Collective displacement has changed the way people experience and engage with products and services. Now supply chains are under unprecedented pressure to meet new demands, putting pressure on business models. Companies will evaluate their physical investments and refocus on points of satisfaction in the final steps before purchase.
Trend 6: Empathy challenge: Fears of inequality have skyrocketed as a result of Corona, posing a challenge for organisations and raising questions about how they should respond. How should they manage the narratives they use to shape their brands to respond to the polarities that are rapidly emerging? Companies need a new approach that combines pragmatism with empathy and that ensures they deliver on their intentions to do good.
Trend 7: Rituals lost and found: The pandemic and the associated restrictions on disease control have disrupted rituals. From big wedding celebrations to commuting in a crowded commuter train. The strong emotional bonds associated with many rituals have been turned upside down - even the ones we used to take for granted. Organisations now need to create new ways for people to cope and reconnect.
From Shaun Borland
The job market has been in constant flux since COVID-19 wreaked havoc on the economy. Many people have lost their jobs, resulting in a rise in unemployment claims. Almost every industry has been impacted by the 'new normal' we have been experiencing due to quarantines, mask-wearing, and social distancing. However, one sector that has been hiring during these unprecedented times in the tech industry.
Tech jobs are not just available at big tech companies or startups. Small and local businesses are also in need of computer science professionals. The needs of these smaller companies might offer you a chance to work in a field you are passionate about while working in the rewarding tech field.
Tech jobs offer a wide variety of career fields you can pursue. No matter your personality, preferences, or interests, there is a tech career for you. You can quickly build your skills and obtain a career in tech through bootcamps, which quickly ramp up your skills.
Bootcamps are an excellent opportunity to go from no coding experience to a certificate. They are a successful way to land your first job. The top coding bootcamps offer a wide variety of skills that lead to rewarding and in-demand jobs.
One of the top players in the bootcamp game is Hack Reactor. This bootcamp offers online classes that range from full-time to self-paced. They offer courses in web development, engineering immersion, and full-stack development. You can complete a program in as little as 12 weeks.
Speaking of hacking, there will always be a need to keep software, servers, and personal data safe from criminals who attempt to gain information from companies and their users illegally. To stop this malice, companies employ teams of cybersecurity professionals.
A cybersecurity professional works tirelessly to keep systems up to date and without flaws in security. A cybersecurity career offers those with technical skills the ability to keep web pages safe.
Workers in this field create programs and policies to protect their company´s assets. Companies want their customers to trust them with their data, so they employ many people to keep their programs safe. Without this trust, companies would lose business as customers feared the loss of their credit card numbers, addresses, or other sensitive information.
One way cybersecurity professionals test their work is through penetration testing. They probe their programs to look for weak spots that a hacker might exploit. Another potential is ethical hacking. Ethical hacking is the attempt to hack into a site but without malicious intent. If successful, ethical hackers share their findings with security teams for them to fix the error.
Criminals are not going to let a storm, disaster, or virus stop them from attempting to break into servers with valuable information; the need for cybersecurity professionals will not wane. You can build the skills required to obtain a job in cybersecurity through one of these top cybersecurity bootcamps.
Another field that will persist through and after the COVID-19 crisis is mobile app development. It is pretty much exactly as it sounds.
Mobile app developers focus on either iOS or Android programming. Nearly all Americans have a device in their pocket that runs on one of these two operating systems. It seems every company has an app. Even local mom-and-pop shops are starting to hire companies or freelancers to create an app for their businesses.
Just like cybersecurity, there will be no shortage of mobile developing jobs in the future. With increasing frequency, business is conducted on mobile devices. It´s not just direct to customer businesses, either. Non-tech companies require mobile software, as well.
If you have not noticed, many doctor´s offices, sandwich shops, and salons utilize mobile devices. Many companies create and sell mobile software exclusively for their unique business purposes.
It is not too late to change your career
You have the same job security as today´s tech workers by attending a bootcamp. Whether you are sick of your current profession or looking for your first career, there are myriad ways you can learn the skills you need to start a new profession that will outlast this pandemic and any other disaster to come.
Registered service providers can present themselves with a short article in the Freelancing.HK-News. In this issue, we present you with a freelancer who is specialised in HR, marketing and copywriting.
With many years of international experience in HR, marketing and copywriting, I am a reliable partner for all companies that want to set up or expand their own marketing, optimise their company´s image or are thinking of expanding abroad.
I provide support in the areas of HR (recruitment and employee motivation), management consultancy (e.g. strategic planning or choice of location) and marketing (market research, product and budget planning, media planning, trade fairs, PR, advertising material and advertising campaigns). I also write texts for online and offline media in German, Hungarian and English.
The freelancer does not receive his money for weeks. Full of rage, he drives to the client, parks his car with squealing tyres directly in front of the owner's office and then rushes into reception: 'I would like to speak to the managing director immediately'.
The secretary seems to have already expected the freelancer's visit and replies, 'I'm sorry, but he was not here all week!'
'That can not be! I saw him at the window a minute ago!'
The secretary: 'That may be, but he saw you too!'
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