What 2020 has taught us

Published: Friday, November 27th, 2020

As we sit writing this blog post, pondering on the year that’s been, we’re asking ourselves, I wonder what Oxford’s 2020 word of the year will be? So many come to mind...

As we reflect, here are some of the things 2020 has taught us.

Digital transformation is no longer a buzz word but a necessity

Overnight, kitchen tables became 9-5 desks, parents' career-changed into teachers and Zoom saw a surge in their sales growth. People across the world had to adapt to remote life and working from home. Digital transformation is no longer just a buzz word for businesses, but a necessity for growth. Ensuring staff have the appropriate technology and resources to access data, collaborate and share knowledge is not only key to a successful remote working solution, but a future-proof one for the entire business.

Invest in your employees – both professionally and personally

2020 has taught us that while Covid-19 has had adverse effects on everyone, it shouldn’t take a global pandemic to look after your team. Employee wellbeing is no longer just about free lunches or company swag (these still help!) but also weekly check ins, Teams chats and sharing the odd funny meme to help lift spirits. For 2021 and onwards, celebrate employee milestones, participate in weekly team quizzes and foster team relationships beyond the HR manual.

Adaptability – remote work, virtual conferences and events

Looking back on March, when the pandemic reached both Australia and the United States, with both governments announcing lockdowns, we know so much more now, than we did then. Irrespective of that, people still adapted, and some, embraced change. Video meetings and interviews were introduced to keep everyone connected. Virtual conferences and events were developed to continue growth and communication. And work life transformed into juggling a home environment and an office one. Some of these changes may not stay, but at least we know, we’re easily able to adapt when we need to, and when we do, there are some positive results.

Nothing is certain, and future planning is always a good idea

Who knew when we rang in the New Year last December, that 2020 would be a year of learning, adaption and planning? For businesses, it’s been an eye-opening reminder that nothing is ever certain, and that you should always be planning for the future. Policies and processes should be adapted to prepare for any unforeseen crises. This includes elements of your HR practices, your IT solutions and your leadership strategies.

Kindness will always be on trend

If we were to pick the Oxford word of 2020, we’d chose compassion. With unemployment at its highest, recessions looming, and countless lives lost, we’ve learnt the fundamental need for compassion and community. We found out that people are resilient and helpful, and we hope this is a trend that’s here to stay. Care packages, team check ins and open forums to discuss mental health within an organisation is key to employee growth and productivity.

As we continue to try understand what the aftermath of 2020 may be, we’re hopeful for a more connected, digitally transformed and prosperous 2021.