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I'm the founder of FutureWork IQ where I spend my time assisting businesses to design digital workplaces or “offices in the cloud.” These environments enable companies to allow flexible and remote working for their teams. I also teach the digital literacy, fluency, communication and collaboration skills needed to work in these modern technology-rich workplaces.

This data is from a piece published by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development entitled The world economy on a tightrope It projects that the economic impact, under a single wave of COVID-19 infections, will be a retraction of 6% in global GDP. (South Africa’s decline is expected to be 7.5% under a single wave scenario and 8.2% under a second wave scenario.)

Projected change in GDP

The graph shows where countries will fall on either side of the projected global average decline.

In a major downturn, having business agility is a powerful asset. The easier and quicker you can change and adapt the better your chances of surviving as a business.

Remote working provides enormous agility benefits. Firstly it gives the business location independence. It means you don’t have to have an office. It means it easier to retain your people. It means it’s easier to scale up or down if you have to. It gives you enormous flexibility to cut costs.

My advice to leadership teams is now is the time to make remote working a permanent feature of your business to help you gain the necessary flexibility to ride out the coming post-COVID-19 economic storms.