The New Normal – What Will Our World Be Like After CoVid-19?

Are the changes we’ve had to make to reduce the spread of the disease temporary? Or will they become a permanent part of our lives?

Personally, I’m taking all of this gloom and doom about living in a post corona world, with a lot of skepticism. And I want to offer you three reasons why.



Episode 11 - The New Normal - What Will Our World Be Like After CoVid-19?

by Roger Reid


It’s a question a lot of people are asking . . . What Will Our World look Like after Covid-19?

Are the changes we’ve had to make to reduce the spread of the disease temporary? Or will they become a permanent part of our lives?

Personally, I’m taking all of this gloom and doom about living in a post corona world, with a lot of skepticism. And I want to offer you three reasons why.

Hey, Welcome back.  This is Roger Reid with another episode of successpoint360 

Most of us have been sequestered in our homes for over two months now, and we’ve become accustomed to working remotely, the kids have transitioned to on-line classes, and we’re binging on Netflix and other on-line streaming services. We’re doing it out of necessity – to reduce our exposure to the coronavirus – and as a result, we’re living our lives in a very different way than what we experienced just three months ago.

But what are things going to be like after the threat of the virus is over, when the current pandemic has been resigned to history? Will some of these changes become permanent? And if so, which ones?  

It seems like anyone with a blog or a podcast or who writes for publication, has jumped on the prediction bandwagon and wants to tell us what it’s going to be like in a post corona world, and not only for the next few months, or even through the rest of the year, but some are extending their predictions into the foreseeable future. And presenting them not as possible outcomes, but as accurate representations of what we can expect. 

Based on what I’m reading, many of the normal or regular activities that we’ve always thought of as a usual part of our lives are no longer going to be available to us. It’s a sweeping generalization, and according to many of these armchair psychics, we’re never going back to many of the behaviors and activities that we took for granted before the pandemic changed our lives.

Specifically, I’m talking about the death bell that’s being rung for public entertainment venues—things like movie theaters, concert halls, night clubs, bowling alleys, skating rinks, and then all the spectator sporting events . . . where thousands of people come together to watch professional and college sports. And let’s not forget about cruise ships. According to many of these predictions, you might as well sink the entire fleet because no one who values their health is ever going to step foot on a cruise ship again.

I don’t know what kind of crystal ball these folks are using, but it must have some extra accessories and features that mine just flat missed out having installed.

Admittedly, these targeted businesses and industries are the source of high-density venues that have been most affected by the pandemic. And when I say affected, I mean they’ve been closed down – because of the potential to spread the virus.

But here’s the big question . . .

How do these modern-day prophets justify their predictions? I know their general rationale is based on the changes we’ve had to make in an effort to bring the virus under control, and yet, these folks are strongly suggesting, that even after the virus is written into the history books, these changes will remain to become a permanent part of our lives.

I know that some of these projections are based on the chance that the virus or some derivation of it, will return in the fall or sometime in the future, requiring these public venues to remain empty and unusable – or at least their capacity will be reduced to a point that profitability falls below the minimum necessary to keep the doors open.

But frankly, I have to take a contrarian viewpoint to these forecasts. Certainly, it’s true that the pandemic has required us to change our routines and the activities that we participate in. But to assert the idea that those changes, which were done as a temporary measure, are going to become the new normal is taking a huge leap into a situation that still has yet to evolve, a situation that will, most likely, will resolve itself over time.

Let’s take a look at the most often sited business and activities that have already received an obituary because of the virus.

The first one is meetings.  Since the pandemic, they’ve become virtual, using on-line platforms (like zoom for example,) to bring people together for discussions and conferences.

But this idea isn’t new. Virtual meetings were taking place a decade ago, when the economy was in a recession, and business budgets made it financially unfeasible to assemble a dozen or 50 or 500 people at the same location to listen to a speaker or group of speakers talk about whatever was relevant at the time.

Using an on-line platform to communicate to a group was done as a cost-saving measure, a way to save money. What happened as soon as the economy turned, when companies beginning begin making money again?

Personal meetings came back. Seeing someone in person, talking with them face-to-face is an integral and traditional part of establishing and maintaining rapport. Employers have learned that there are lots of benefits in bringing employees together within a controlled or structured environment, not the least of which is the boost to morale. There’s an unstated, yet unified undercurrent that results from personal meetings – it motivates and inspires the idea of working together to accomplish something important, with individuals recognizing their part in making a vital contribution.

So for the time being, as long as the risk of the virus is high or unpredictable, the trend toward virtual meetings will continue, but in the long term, it will not replace the desire, the need, the benefits of holding in-person meetings. In time, face to face meetings will again become the preferred method of distributing information, training, explaining new policy, and whatever it is that management wants to pass along to the rest of the troops.

Another industry that’s projected to undergo massive change is education. Many of the smaller, less prestigious schools are predicted to fail financially. And those that remain, what I call cornerstone universities, such as MIT, Yale, Harvard, are going to require a complete financial overall to remain competitive. The reason is based on recognizing the bloated and exorbitant cost of attending a brick and mortar institution as compared to completing an accredited on-line degree.

The idea that education is going to switch from a classroom delivered curriculum to an on-line equivalent is not new. I can remember in the late 80s trying to find an accredited institution that offered online degrees. And from memory, I believe there were only one or two schools that offered any kind of online degrees, but it was a hybrid program, and still required some minimal attendance, meaning you had to travel to a physical classroom to complete the necessary residency requirements. Today, students can choose from many different types of schools to complete an on-line degree program, and they can do it without the need to show up in a physical classroom.

So, this notion of switching from a campus centered education to an online program is not new. We’re simply seeing the acceleration of an existing process that was already well underway before the virus required schools to close their classrooms.

This shift will hopefully result in students and their parents taking a hard look at what they’re paying for, and seriously question the value – in dollars and cents – that they’re spending to obtain a degree. The extortionate cost of tuition for a traditionally sourced degree hasn’t made economic sense for a long time. Obviously, if you need the accreditation, the documentation, to fulfill the requirement for professional licensing, it raises the importance of completing a degree program. For example, medicine, law, teaching, or engineering or architecture, and if that’s your situation, then get it done as quickly and as cheaply as possible, because as on-line classes and curriculum becomes more standardized, prices are going to fall.  They’ll have to, because of the competition. And a lot more people are going to be asking why they need to go into debt, and take out huge student loans to complete a traditional college degree when a much cheaper on-line alternative is available.

The next forecast has to do with entertainment. Specifically, I’m talking about Netflix and other competitive streaming services offering on-demand choices of programming. And like the previous example, this isn’t something that is just happened within the last two or three months. This has been an on-going trend for quite some time. All you need to do is look at the growth of Netflix over the last five years.

The reason is simple.  More and more consumers are turning to a subscription service the offers the type of entertainment and programming that they want. And it’s in no small part to the quality of broadcast television, and industry that continues to produce shows that are a generic hodge-podge of simplistic, predictable, and superficial garbage.

And yes, I’ve heard the argument that instead of movie theaters we’re going to rely on Netflix or i’s equivalent, because we’ve discovered that on-line streaming services are so convenient that we’ve realized we don’t need to go to a movie theater.

But that doesn’t acknowledge why movie theaters exist in the first place.

When we go to a public venue—and this applies not only to movie theaters, but also restaurants, and sporting events, night clubs, and concerts – it’s because we’re looking for an experience.  We don’t go to a restaurant just to satisfy our hunger, we go to engage in a public activity that brings us pleasure, in the case of a restaurant, to be waiting on, to enjoy someone else prepare the food and clean up the dishes, and – and this is the priority, –  we want to be among other people. And even though we may not personally interact with them, the fact that we see them or hear them, we know they’re there, it gives us a sense of assurance that everything‘s OK. That our society is still on stable ground, that it’s safe to move freely about the cabin.

Call it a subconscious touchstone, or a foundational part of enjoying an open and safe society, in any case, it confirms our confidence in our culture as one in which we can function without fear or anxiety.

We could talk about other areas of our lives that have been affected by the pandemic and are being targeted as candidates for radical and permanent change. It’s a big list, including on-line shopping, air, train. and bus travel, carpooling, night clubs, public performance venues, and of course, cruise ships.

But the bottom line is the same: These negative projections are based on a snapshot in time that is already dated, and it completely ignores the fact that many of the underlying factors that contributed to the spread of the pandemic are already changing, and that’s going to make a huge difference in the way we respond to future outbreaks, if and when they occur.

I promised you three reasons why the majority of post corona predictions are wrong. Here they are:

First, there’s the probability of having a working vaccine, of finding a cure in the very near future. And these are not pie in the sky possibilities. There are about a hundred companies currently working on developing a vaccine, and some of them are already showing the promise of reducing the severity of the symptoms as well as providing a degree of immunity.

Second, there’s the very real possibility of improving the country’s leadership, of electing officials that are better equipped, more intelligent, and have a better understanding of their responsibility to serve the people first, regardless of political affiliations or personal agendas. If we’d had effective leadership in the first place, there’s a good chance the virus would never have gotten a foot-hold in this country.

And third, the divide that we’ve seen in the medical community between the administrators of health services and the actual practice of providing care to those who need it, is going to shrink, primarily from all the negative exposure and embarrassing transparency. The pandemic has exposed a lot of the problems and bottlenecks in the system, especially those that originate from political influence. On top of that, there are layers and layers of bureaucracy that exits only to regulate and restrict health care based on the patient’s ability to pay. And, there’s the financial gouging of consumers that has plagued the industry ever since a for-profit health care insurance system was granted permission to operate in the mid-twentieth century.

Yes, the pandemic has shown the medical’s communities vulnerabilities, in the form of ineffective supply chains, insufficient inventories of essential materials and equipment, and it revealed the very different priorities between front line health care workers – who are trying to deliver service to those who need it – and the administrative bureaucracy who is only concerned with the bottom line. The fact that the pandemic brought these problems to the forefront means there’s a better chance of getting some of the shortfalls corrected. And if it’s done correctly, we’re going to see the doctors and nurses who are treating the problem on a daily basis, have a lot more input, a lot more say in directing recourses, manpower, and preparation for future outbreaks, to make sure there are sufficient supplies for mass testing and early isolation for those who require it.

It’s the combination of these factors—a working vaccine, Improved national management, and a more effective medical community that will result in a better-executed, non-partisan response to future outbreaks, reducing and ultimately preventing the spread of contagious disease.

I’ll leave you with this:

The idea that the pandemic has left us with a situation that’s right out of some dystopian novel about a world in which the future is a shadowy wasteland of what used to be, completely ignores the 

The probability of other influences, such as ongoing research, technology, and changes brought about by political and social motivations.

Yes, some industries are going to change, because they were already in the process of changing. And as they evolve, they will either flourish and grow, or find it financially unfeasible to operate. But it won’t be exclusively because of the coronavirus. Most if not all of these businesses were already in transition, already being influenced by the on-going attitudes, cultural evolution, and advancements in technology.

The pandemic simply accelerated their outcome.

So, I’m going to suggest that the next time you read or hear about how our lives in a post corona world is going to be so very different, stop for a moment, and realize that the majority of unexpected change, especially of the magnitude created by a pandemic, typically gives birth to discoveries, advancements, and improvements in many different sectors of the economy and culture.

These are the influences that will eventually change our lives, and they will change them for the better.

Hey, that’s it for this episode. If you’d like a transcript, you’ll find it at Just click on the link under the appropriate episode. If you have a question or comment, you can leave me a message by using the voicemail link in the main menu on the successpoint360 website.

Thanks for listening, and I’ll see you next time.

© 2020, Roger A. Reid