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Professionals; Who Will Wade Through The Pandemic?
Let me take you through what one can expect post lockdown and what skills you would need to survive this pandemic.
Sitting at home in lockdown most of us are wondering what will be the work scenario post-coronavirus. We don’t know what will be the state of affairs post lockdown, but one thing is sure – It will not be the same.
To begin with, Layoffs are going to be inevitable. Many companies are going to lay off employees to ensure their sustenance. Jobs are going to be cut worldwide and India is not going to be an exception. Many companies are already asking employees to go on leave; retrench plans are being made. Offers are being withdrawn; joinings are being deferred and renegotiation on salaries to join is happening all over. Salary cuts are also on the agenda.
This is the time when most companies do their annual performance management and increments which is not happening and in some cases, it is delayed. The morale and motivation of employees are down; all are looking for just job protection.
Most important the working habits are going to change in a big way. Work from Home prevalent in Information Technology Companies will be the norm for many other industries. Remote Working will be in vogue. Companies will re-look at their leave policies and travel policies to name a few.
Organizations will try all tricks to manage and cut costs. It will be a good opportunity for organizations to re-look at their organizational structure and cut flab across the board. This will be the time when we will even see a lot of senior and middle management people losing their jobs due to organizational restructuring.
A lot of Learning – Un Learning and Re-Learning will happen and all professionals will have to undergo this process if they want to survive this catastrophe. Organizations will have to find innovative and new ways of Employee Engagement and Employee Experience.
All this is happening or going to happen but Who will wade through this pandemic. Who are the professionals who will survive and sail through this pandemic?
1. Professionals with High Self Confidence / Professionals with a Zeal and Passion for their Work.
Professionals with high self-confidence who know their job well and are performing well are the ones who will pass through this phase. Those who believe that they are the BEST in their work area and willing to learn more and give in more than a hundred percent are the ones who will wade through. The ones who will put in extra efforts both qualitatively and quantitatively and who are ready to embrace change and learn new things in their area of work will survive.
2. Professionals Who become Data-Driven / Talk Numbers
Professionals who create data dashboards around their work area. Those who help in putting facts and figures numerically and present them in well-curated dashboards to their Bosses to make their lives simpler and help them in taking quick and accurate decisions based on facts and figures; seniors will value their contributions and will retain them to add value to the organization.
3. Employees Who are not perceived to be part of Cost Centers and add Revenue to the Business directly or adapt themselves to business enhancing roles
When layoffs start the ones who are in staff function and non-revenue adding will be the first ones to be pruned. Professionals who make sure that they are adding revenue to the business or with quick learning double up for revenue-generating roles are the ones likely to survive the crisis. Since these roles are important for the management they last long.
4. Employees who become Members of Committees / Task Force in the Organisation working on impending problems and finding solutions to it
Professionals who complete their own work efficiently and also find time to commit themselves to be members of Task Force working on resolving issues in the organization are the ones who stand a chance to be retained by the organization. They are considered as employees who are doing jobs beyond their call of duties. They are generalists who can add value to an organization during times of crisis and Management would love to pay a premium to retain this breed of professionals.
5. Employees who are not rigid and are Flexible / Agile
During the crisis “All work is my work” becomes the expectation of management. Employees have to be flexible in taking up whatever role is assigned to them. Employees need to understand the organizational dynamics & need of the hour and accordingly act. They need to be AGILE and take up any small or big responsibilities assigned to them. Professionals who demonstrate this get a premium and are sought by management.
6. Employees Who Network.
Networking plays an important role in an organization. Networking helps employees demonstrate that they can collaborate with others in different departments to get their work done formally and informally. This helps in getting a lot of work in the organization. It also helps professionals to build their personal brand in the organization. Formal and informal networking helps in making your presence felt in the organization and management would prefer these kinds of people to continue in the organization.
7. Employees Who Focus & Work on Digitization in their respective work areas
These are the times of Digitization and Remote working as most of the transactions happen digitally. Most of the corporations are pushing for digitization and if one is using digitization in his area of work the chances of him playing an important role in the organization are very high and so is his retention.
8. Employees who learn the basic ropes of IT infra management
In the post-COVID World, remote working and Work from Home will be a norm. It will be expected from each professional to manage his own IT infrastructure. The IT Help desk which helps us in all our work in the office will be operating remotely and one will have to learn the ropes of IT infra to succeed, contribute, and do his work. Tech Savvy professionals will be identified and chances of them to be retained by the organization will be high.
9. Employees Who Self Promote themselves and are Helpful & Approachable
This is another aspect that will play an important role in the organization to decide whom to retain. Employees who are visible in the organization through their positive and helpful actions, ones who are approachable, and are solution providers get noticed by senior management and they have a high chance to survive the crisis.
10. Professionals who focus on learning and acquiring new and relevant contemporary skills and competencies
This breed also catches the eyes of Senior Management. Ones who are learning new things, practicing and experimenting in their work areas and keep adding value to the organization will definitely get noticed. Management loves them as they are the ones who bring newness to the organization and stand a fair chance to escape the layoffs.
11. Employees who don’t backbite about the Companies / Managers / Work and Culture of their organization
Talking ill about the organization is bad and the ones who indulge in it are easily noticed by management and this is the time when they are pruned out. Even if you are a relatively good performer if you talk negatively about the organization you are gone. Employees who do not talk ill about their work or company culture may survive the pandemic.
12. Lastly, Employees who are Empathetic / OPTIMISTIC
Positive employees full of energy and vigor and vitality are the ones who will pass through the crisis any time anywhere.
To sum it I would say that this is a testing time for organizations and the organizational dynamics. Post pandemic is going to be different from what it is now and if professionals demonstrate the above they stand a fair chance to wade through the crisis.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house