08-Oct-2020 02:42 PM
Posted by Prashanth GJ, CEO, Technobind
Last six months have been a challenging yet one of the most meaningful phases for all of us. When the pandemic struck rather unexpectedly, we barely had the time to think through, gather the ammunition and prepare ourselves for what turned out to be an intense battle with the virus. But when we look back, I think we can state unabashedly that we had a fairly quick and effective turnaround—both as individuals and collectively as business entities.
For the IT industry and the overall economy, the initial phase of extreme doomsday mongering was indeed a stressful time. It led to businesses going slow on expansion plans– be it people, offices or outreach in general—in what might later be termed as an ‘overreaction’ to the crisis.
In hindsight, I feel that we could have been more realistic in our outlay. It was important to differentiate between timidity and prudence. Nonetheless, businesses were quick in standing up remote working systems and new processes almost overnight which indicates how critical it is for us to have the right tools and technologies during times of crisis.
Getting back to normal
Six months down the line, markets have bounced back. Technology stocks especially have been on a roll. We saw some large IPOs taking place amidst the COVID lockdowns. SnowFlake and Sumologic--both had blockbuster IPOs and closer home, Happiest Minds was a bumper IPO too. These are clear signs of the prevalent optimism in the market in terms of new investments, positive growth prospects and the overall economic outlook.
India, as market, is looking really positive with new entrants coming out with interesting offerings—Snowflake being one of the biggest names. As a technology distributor, Technobind too saw introduction of some interesting alliances in the last few months namely Logmein, Cloudian and now ColorTokens – each of them with a clear value prop of solving specific customer business problems.
Most importantly, businesses’ ability to adapt to changing situations literally shone through during this crisis. While technology leaders and brands did a commendable work on enabling this shift, the employees made this transition a huge success.
It wasn’t an easy shift because we were up against the tide---we are going against some of the most established practices in the world of work. Our salesforce had to unlearn some of the age-old techniques of selling, while our technical teams had to do remote POCs and implementations. We ensured education and learning continued through new delivery models. We got used to remotely consulting our doctors in a matter of few days. Greeting colleagues through video conferencing stopped feeling odd. From good old ways, we eagerly picked up virtual means of socializations –all thanks to technology.
The ‘new normal’ wasn’t something we were prepared for, but we shifted seamlessly. Even those organizations that were traditionally inclined to office-centric work models migrated with minimal disruption, albeit the huge cultural shifts that they had to undergo. While we were at it, we did not see productivity or end results sufferings which I believe is an achievement that we all can be proud of.
For the IT channel ecosystem, a community that thrived on personal interactions and relationships, the post-lockdown realities appeared like a ‘do or die’ situation. Nevertheless, we took the bull by the horns. Most importantly, we converted adversities into opportunities. And, that perhaps is the biggest learning from the pandemic –the readiness to change and ability to remain agile.
Looking ahead to positive times
Even when we get back to a reasonable form of ‘normalcy’, we must not forget that we may never really go back to the old normal. And that’s not something we should be worried about. For example, we see resistance among employees to return to offices and continue to work in the way they earlier used to do. In fact, smart companies are taking this resistance as an opportunity by reorienting resource deployment – best person for the job regardless of the geographical location – and we are doing it too here at Technobind. And, I guess it’s a very efficient way of deploying resources and will lead to normalisation of resources across regions.
Quite clearly, the global disruption has led to some sweeping changes across industries, creating new opportunities and prospects. It’s important to continue riding this wave with the same zeal and spirit that we initially set off with.