The old normal is dead! Now we learn to adapt to a new normal.
Data Point One: Many corporations are completely re-evaluating their need for office space. This article on New York gives the picture. Working at home will equal learning at home will equal revenue for us. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/12/nyregion/coronavirus-work-from-home.html?referringSource=articleS...
Data Point Two: Cal State University system, the largest in the world, has just announced that they will not be having on campus classes in the fall. That will spread to other state universities and probably private universities. Learning online, like it or not, is going to become much more normal than it ever was. Good for us.
A month ago I posted a conversation asking whether people thought the uptick in our sales would be permanent or temporary. Obviously there will be fluctuations. But, in the end, this trend is significant and permanent.
Get on Board!!
I'll try to look at it from a different angle... I think there is more to it than just making working from home more common. Working from home is still...working. Right now, people are stuck at home, with not much to do. This will change once the work starts resuming, online or offline. And as the life starts getting back to normal, and people will start returning back to their lives (and hobbies) their free time will decrease. And with that, the appetite for learning will probably decrease to usual numbers.
There are so many unknowns. We don't know what will happen in the Fall. There are some predictions that it will be worse than it has been in the Spring. But, we don't know. I would not hold my breath waiting for "normal" to return. There was already an upward trend to more online training and that has now permanently accelerated in my opinion. We shall see.
I'm reluctanct to believe any claims about "new normal." We still have no idea how things will pan out. It's also likely that in 1-2 years we will have a combination of herd immunity, a vaccine, and better treatments, and then all this "new normal" stuff will just be a temporary blip when the real "new normal" becomes the regular old normal.
I certainly agree with your point -- that we should adapt to current circumstances and take advantage of our unique positions as online educators -- but it's way too early to have any confidence in long-term implications for education, work, and society.
Agreed. If we look at history these "new normal" - as a result of unexpected, unplanned events, we have lessons on how human nature and the business world reacts and responds - once the unexpected, unplanned events are resolved. We have had pandemics, wars, diseases, market crashes, "Acts of God", attacks, etc - we have adapted. As a 35+ years corporate trainer and instructional designer, I have witnessed the promotion of online, virtual (by other names) at the expense of in-person, live learning - and we always come back full circle and integrate the lessons learned. Adults (and children) - not everyone learns in the same methodology. Online, Virtual Live, On-Demand, and Live Learning - all have a place and value. What I have learned is that we have an adaptable toolkit as learning providers.