We are there. Almost there. The moment we’ve been waiting for for the past year and a half, when we can finally see the famous “light at the end of the tunnel” that we’ve been told is coming. So it’s time, time to take a step back and take stock of what we have to remember from all this, on the positive and negative impacts of these long months. We summarize for you the key elements that draw, for us, the contours of a photograph not yet totally clear.
Psychological impacts, left-behind and collateral victims: this is – also – the Covid.
As we have already written in a previous article (read the article here), the impact of the pandemic on the Swiss population has been multiple, both in terms of effects and of the target audiences concerned. In the first place, young people who found themselves without any occupation from one day to the next, to whom “a part of their life” had been taken away, according to them (bye bye studies, bye bye student jobs, bye bye social relations). In a different way, expatriates, for whom the distance is already experienced as difficult for most of them, suddenly had no possibility to physically reconnect with their country of origin.
And without being a young person or an expatriate, it is clear that we have all been affected to a greater or lesser extent. Fear, doubts, anguish, important stress, are obvious components that can be found in almost everyone, and that will probably take several months to disappear.
What if we were finally moving towards a better world?
Rather than talking about impacts, let’s talk about “teaching”. It would be wrong, and biased, to paint a black picture of the situation, without seeing the positive lessons that it has brought. “Beyond the horror, there is a glimmer of hope, as the crisis will provide humanity with important lessons that will help shape a better future,” as said in a recent article.
Obviously, these long months of upheaval in the professional world have brought in their wake a profound change in the processes in force in many companies (SMEs and large groups alike): more agility, a more human managerial dimension, a greater concern for the personal lives of employees, a revision of the way productivity is perceived and evaluated (results versus strict timesheets).
On a personal level, the joy of reconnecting with physical contact has been joined by the joy of its importance in the value chain. As if, suddenly, personal life was taking over from personal frenzy. As if we were rediscovering everything that makes “the salt of life”. And not only in the private sphere. “It is encouraging to see the number of initiatives that have formed, often online, to help seniors, support restaurants and small businesses, donate to artists or share experiences. Newspapers are making their articles about the coronavirus crisis available for free. Star chefs are offering recipes on Instagram and having food delivered to caregivers.”
The notion of solidarity has never been stronger (and advocated for) during this past year. Mutual aid network, support to local associations, voluntary help etc., it is a whole human chain that has been woven. According to a study conducted in France in 2020, “three quarters of people think that the solidarity networks that have been created should be maintained.”
Also according to this study, “the measures most likely to be implemented in the future are to value local circuits (68%), to hold online meetings more often and to reduce travel (59%), and to consume local and seasonal products (42%).”
In short, less pollution, more quality of life, a more local, ecological and solidarity-based economy: isn’t this, in the end, the better world we should be moving towards?