The reality of COVID–19 pandemic has presented us with the fact that changes will be required to thrive in the near future. COVID-19 will change a lot of habits. It is a massive trigger with global life altering ramifications. It will introduce whole new sets of behaviors, paradigms, mindset, skillsets and toolsets.
So how do we prepare for the post COVID-19 era? To answer that, I’ll like to take an anecdote from the Bible. The story of the 10 virgins. Although the story classified the virgins as five wise and five foolish virgins, the truth is, they were all virgins. The reason for the classification was that the wise anticipated, they made preparation before the event itself happened. The foolish did same things by preparing but the wise anticipated and prepared extra while the foolish took just enough to last – they took the norm. It was the extra that distinguished the wise ones. They anticipated a twist in events; they prepared and positioned to profit the most even with the twist.
That exactly is what we will need to do if we will be positioned to thrive in the post-COVID-19 era. We need to reinvent ourselves in line with the demands that this dispensation will place on us – the knowledge demands, the skillset demands, the mindset demands, etc. While many are shutting down and trying to hide away, those who would thrive will need to continually look at the horizon and make the needed internal and external adjustments. If we don’t do this, we may have to struggle greatly when we emerge out of the pandemic.
COVID-19 is a trigger that would make people think of how to make sure we manage these challenges, before they create a second wave of catastrophe.
We should begin to draw up models for social interactions. Our learning system needs to integrate innovation and creativity. One of the skills requisite for surviving this era, according to World Economic Forum is Emotional Intelligence. This skill will help people process thoughts with emotions and then make better decisions. We need to be able to anticipate and create analytical problem-solving skills according to the world economic forum; we need active minds and sound judgement. For us to compete with machines, we must be able to think fast.
Africa cannot afford to be waiting for the West to help us or provide solutions; we need Interpersonal and Relationship skills. We need Leadership skills; we need to be able to Self-Lead. We need to develop our Human Resource, build infrastructures and institutions for the future. And we need to do it fast! We need to, as a matter of urgency, start investing in the next generation.
– Tajudeen Damilola Wasiu