Navigating the post-pandemic terrain is not going to be an easy adventure. To stay afloat in the continuously changing and shifting market, your business should be reskilling your employees. The rapid digitalization that has occurred during the last 2 years of the pandemic has fore fronted the need for businesses to quickly adapt to new environmental changes.
My friend Jacob owns an educational drama company which tutors children in schools and conducts private tuition for children who are interested in the art. He has about 20 staff under him, some of these employees came from less well to do families or were sole bread winners. They were highly dependent on the job and thoroughly enjoyed being a part of this company.
However, their happiness and stability were short-lived when the pandemic hit and co-curricular activities were suspended. The reduction of face-to-face meetings affected Jacob’s business greatly as he depended on physical interaction to adequately teach the children. The sudden restrictions meant that he could not continue teaching his students the way that he was used to – he needed to change his strategy or take a huge blow to his income.
Jacob fortunately decided to reskill his employees. He creates a short crash course on how to continue teaching drama online and tasked his employees to create a new curriculum on online drama learning. This reskilling allowed his company to stay afloat during the messy covid season, when restrictions would unexpectedly lift and be reinforced. The best part – the creation of the online curriculum has now expanded his target audience. He now has students from all across the globe!
Because Jacob made the right choice to reskill his employees, they managed to keep their jobs and preparing themselves for a digital future. Jacob’s business also managed to stay afloat during the tough times.
If you’re not convinced that you should reskill your employees, here’s 3 reasons to consider:
1. Technology is Constantly Advancing
Think about it – how many of the applications or systems you used 5 years ago, do you still use today? Keeping up with the latest and most efficient technology can bring you and your company a long way.
In Jacob’s case, his company needed to transform from offline to online within a short period of time. This involved picking up new applications and exploring different websites and apps to see which would work the best for his company. Because Jacob managed to quickly adapt to new platforms, his company managed to stay afloat during the pandemic.
Our best advice to you is to stay ahead of the latest technological trends. Your company should constantly want to improve, learn and grow – your employees are the best way to ensure this happens.
2. Improve Business Productivity
Equipping your employees with the skills to take on new job roles and tasks can create a more productive and efficient work environment.
Take this scenario as an example. I had a friend who worked as a part-time waitress in an F&B in Singapore. When the pandemic hit, the store had to stop dine-ins as a requirement in Singapore. Her boss did not want to let go of his loyal staff during this tough period. So, he found different ways to reskill his employees and ensure job security for them.
My friend was a university student who was pursing communications as a major. Taking advantage of this skill, her boss shifted her responsibilities to managing the establishment’s social media accounts instead. He needed her to gain a following on their social media page. The company intended to do home deliveries and created discounted family bundles to accommodate to the pandemic – he needed social media to reach out to his audience.
My friend used her previous knowledge from school to execute this new task. In this sense, despite being hired as a waitress, her boss reskilled her to adapt to the changing times. This allowed him to keep the business running, helped her with job security – and even added to her professional portfolio!
3. Bolster a Culture of Progression and Learning
Taking the step back and acknowledging that certain areas of your business model no longer work is not failure, rather, look at it as an opportunity for growth. It is okay to learn, unlearn and relearn. Investing in the development of your staff and your business can foster a shared sense of purpose and create a healthy work-environment for all.
Certain steps you can take towards reskilling your staff could be to create avenues for shadowing other members of the team, sending them for new courses or to provide an environment that supports furthering their education.
A business that is transparent about reskilling, progression and learning can create retain employees for the long-term as well!
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