Coming into 2020, the last thing our divided world needed was a once-in-a-generation pandemic. Lo and behold, along came COVID-19 to tear our best-laid plans asunder, making this year feel like a virtual write-off for many (pun firmly intended). In an effort to combat its spread, governments everywhere put their countries into lockdown, requiring citizens to stay at home whenever possible. The result? Boredom, frustration, and alienation.
Even so, every cloud has a silver lining, and there were indeed some positives to draw from the experience — the most notable being the glut of free time to spend however you preferred (within the confines of your home, that is). Playing games? Absolutely. Exercising? An excellent option. In a fast-paced world, this was a chance to breathe.
On top of the many challenges, there were interesting opportunities in the business world, too. Companies had to make major operational changes just to survive. The move to remote working was a sharp shock, but it cemented an established trend towards working from home. Switching to virtual collaboration was trickier: a BCG study of the first COVID-19 lockdown found that while productivity stayed high for individual tasks, it dipped for collaborative tasks.