To look forward to 2021we first must address the unprecedented disruption of 2020. Unlike preceding years where slow incremental change is reflected in themes spanning a few years, 2021 will be a leap forward to address the monumental challenges pressed upon us. COVID has thoroughly transformed our social, economic, and professional lives. It has ushered in a new era that will dramatically shift the nature of work in the decades to come. Many of the sectors of the economy where PlaybookBuilder serves have had to thoroughly reinvent themselves in 2020 to remain viable. We expect to see a continuation of that trend into 2021.
Prediction #1: Digital interactions will be the new normal.
For many of us over 40, we hold sacred certain areas of professional life. We struggle to imagine interviewing a new candidate for a critical role without any face-to-face interaction. We can’t imagine welcoming aboard a new member of our team without ever shaking their hand or touring the building together. We cannot fathom holding strategic planning sessions without being in the room with our leaders. And the idea of an entire workforce operating at home? Impossible to imagine. But we have. And in 2021 it will become the norm. I predict the apprehension and biases against digital meetings, digital trainings, digital onboardings, and digital interactions of all sorts will go away and we will normalize these changes.
We expect continued adoption of remote work technologies over 2021 as leaders embrace the obvious.
Prediction #2: Reinvention = Survival.
Some business models survive pandemics and economic shocks. Some do not. Evolution hands out its demands equally but for those businesses that cannot adopt and adapt, they will cease to be. This has already become evident. For our client base, we’ve seen them use PlaybookBuilder software in increasingly creative ways. Many of our clients have taken to using our software to create digital products and training for their clients and new prospects. In fact, to support this unexpected development, we added a payment function to help them monetize their IP in this fashion. We’ve also seen many clients create training and coaching businesses to others in their industry – their former competitors – licensing their processes and insights as new streams of revenue.
Prediction #3: Restructuring and retraining will be widespread
Due to work-from-home mandates, structural unemployment, and the need to reinvent, we are expecting digital training to explode. Disruption is messy and retraining and realigning teams is now more urgent and challenging than any other time in recent memory. Providing self-authored digital training and resources keeps teams connected to their peers, aligned with culture and accountable to results. For the businesses that embrace the technology that encourages this, they will recover and attack opportunities that much faster. We anticipate widespread adoption of technologies that enable these activities and positively welcome the increasing demands placed onto the e-learning space because it will foster more innovation and accelerated growth.
In every economic contraction there are winners and losers. Historically, those that lean into the change, reinvent, and harness technology wisely, tend to outperform the slow, lethargic or over-confident. This is a time for bold moves and swift action and 2021 will favor those that acted decisively.