Landscape fraternity or industry in India is forced to feel the blow of COVID 19 as the entire gamut of operation in landscaping is outdoor bound activities; therefore landscape industry is one of the sectors which are badly hit by Corona pandemic.
Any disaster has four stages: acknowledgement, containment, survival, and recovery. The first two stages are the most difficult ones for mankind as it has to encounter changes in multiple ways. These two phases run parallel to the stress management, the psychological impact of disaster and destruction caused by the disaster. It brings our lives to halt in the short run, a halt with deep silence of pain and fear.
Acknowledging the impact and causes of the disaster becomes imperative to shift to the other phase of containment. This second phase introduces the creative destruction of old practices and old mistakes to better practices. It is characterized by swift measures to protect the lives of people and control the impact of the disaster. This phase requires one to develop the skill to adjust to the changes and overcome a natural inertial tendency to stick to old norms. The skills required to strengthen our mind, body and soul, skills to practice harmony, kindness, and compassion.
At the recovery level, your attributes and skillset will enable you to a quick recovery in bouncing back to bring your business on a fast track.
History says, opportunities emerge from such crisis and COVID 19 has brought the entire human race on such a level field where you need to develop special and unique attributes and skill for survival first and then for running your livelihood. These attributes and skills are very much fundamental and basics and are very important to look at these with different perspectives:
- Healthy Life Style: Professional associated with landscaping & Gardening are most vulnerable to this pandemic as they work with soil. Therefore, health will become the primary focus of your life. You have to keep yourself healthy because you have to take a quantitative jump to come out of recurrent losses. Also, there might be possible in the near future that some kind of mobile application will be available to mark your health status through colour codings like green, orange and red. Your health status will determine your passport of entry to the different establishment in different departments and to other countries as well. You need to keep your staff and employees healthy. You might have to start separate medical department for regular health checkup of your working force to keep a check on their health.
- Honesty & Loyalty: Work from home will become regular features in most of the establishment in coming future and in such circumstances your honesty and loyalty towards your customer or employer count the most because trust issue will always be there in delivering results. Your professional survival will be dependent on your honesty and loyalty only.
- Communication Skill: Medium of communication is changing very fast in this changing scenario and probably more modes are expected after recovery of this COVID 19 crisis. When we communicate face to face, there are opportunities to create an aura of your personality that builds emotional bonding with the audience but when you are communicating through the electronic medium you cannot create the same and listener may disconnect. Therefore, you need a different kind of communication skill where you can create a theatrical ambience to hold your audience for a longer period and also convert your audience into the repetitive listener.
- Knowledge: We are heading towards knowledge and skill-based society. And consequently, professions and business are also becoming knowledge-based. So, you need to update with frequently changing and updating skills and knowledge.
- Technology Friendliness: When we talk about the knowledge-based world, it is imperative that technology is embedded with it. Technology encircles your life at 360 degrees and thus has forced you to make it part and parcel of your life. Therefore you need to acquire the skill set to adapt it in your life, subsequently; you have to understand its proper use and utilization for your business and profession. Also, you have to analyze the difference between friendliness and addiction; friendliness allows you to utilize technology at an optimum level and addiction means misuse of technology.
- Human Resource Management Skill: Managing your human resource is now not limited to be taken care of by your HR department but as a business owner it is your responsibility to understand your human resource. Human Resource Management encompasses through hiring, training and retaining. Out of these three domains, retention of human resource has become typically difficult, so as a business owner it is your prior responsibility to look after personally, otherwise organizing, hiring and training at a frequent interval of time will put extra stress on the cost of your products and services.
- Time Management Skill: Corona crisis has put the entire world on the back foot in all dimension of life. Financial losses have thrown many countries including India back to several decades. And many entrepreneurs have to start again from scratch and believe me if you are forty plus, it is a herculean task. In such circumstances, you have to learn the art of time management and time management is not merely clock management but it is an art of utilizing your every second properly and completes your task with zero error. Minimizing the scope of making mistakes, errors or idle time will give you an edge over any crisis.
- Adaptive to new learning skill: Rigidity in thought process is very dangerous in today’s world. And surrendering to the notion of not learning a new skill will put you out of game, market or competition, whatever you say. Be a student of life and keep alive alertness, inquisitiveness and willingness of a student within you. In case if you hire a professional expert for any new skill set, you must bear the quality to understand that skill set and its applicability in your organization. And a healthy body and a healthy mind will help in adapting to new learning skill set.
- Art of Optimum Resource Management: Cost control will be the buzz after COVID 19 crisis, and this will be possible only when you know how to utilize your resources at an optimum level. And you have to check that at every level of the entire gamut of operations. This art will enable you to save time, money and energy, which are fundamental resources not only of your commercial venture but life as well.
Competitiveness: Primarily, competitions are of two types, one is external and another is internal. We are more focused on external competition but do not take the internal competition seriously. Internal competition is equally important as the external one. Your today’s products and services should be better than yesterday’s one. And you should examine your internal competitiveness at frequent intervals of time like appraisals.
Author:- Prem Tiwari