We Should Wake Up Smiling These Days

This time last year, right? Confusion, doubt, suspicion, fear, horror. We were getting our heads around a new concept: pandemic. Ugh. It is hard to remember those several weeks of WTH?! This year, spring is so different. We have survived, although there have been so many sad losses along the way. We are wiser, even if we miss our former anything-goes innocence. Certainly, we are now more educated on how intricately connected we are globally, by our humanity, and by our business practices. Yes, “globalism” is a thing, and the genie is not going back into that jug. But in recent days, and in good timing with the coming of spring, there is some good news. We should wake up smiling these days.

Indiana Is Open For Business

Regardless of how you felt personally about it, the mask mandate in Indiana is over. I learned from this experience that I enjoy watching someone else’s face when they are speaking to me, or even if they are just yelling at their kids. There is so much expression in the whole combination of eyes and lower face. Being able to see other’s full faces made Zoom meetings tolerable. I also think that everyone does some level of lip-reading when others speak. I heard a friend say that being a masked face in a crowd of masked faces made them feel effectively invisible. I’ll bet kids can empathize with that. I missed seeing smiles in my community. I’m breathing deeper now I think because we all look like ourselves again.

Let’s All Kick Back Into THRIVE Mode

Surviving so many unknowns in the last year meant making adjustments. Companies stopped or slowed their hiring. Inventories in most retail operations shrank. Both business and leisure travel came to a standstill. Consumers stopped spending money, either as a caution or because they had been furloughed and didn’t have it. This happened not only in America but all over the world. We are still seeing significant supply chain disruptions for goods that are imported from overseas. This particular headache will not be solved quickly either, I’m pretty sure. While the U.S. has had a strong vaccination rollout and response, many countries that supply U.S. industries are still struggling to get the vaccines that enable their workers to ramp up production to pre-pandemic levels. Here in our little corner of the world, however, we can start to crank it up.

Mentally–Let’s Move On

A good starting point is to dust off your G & D plan from a year ago and see what your strategy was then. After adjusting for the lost last year, what is your starting point at this moment? Is your sales team adequate and motivated? Are your products ready to move? Can your service level increase? Can you look at where you are at this moment and project how much you can grow by the beginning of Q3? I hope we can all jump back into expansion mode and bring our commerce activity not just back up to speed, but maybe even to where it might have been without a year of Covid-19.

If evaluating and upgrading your company IT performance was on the list for last year, and subsequently got axed—this is a good time to reconsider how much your technology can help you recover from a year of uncertainty and possibly loss. Aptica offers free assessments of what you have and what it is doing for you. We also might know how your technology could help your business make a major leap forward. It just takes a phone call and some questions from you to get started.

Jason Newburg, 260.243.5100, ext 2101, is the founder and owner of Aptica LLC. This IT management and support company has been serving small to medium-sized businesses for 19 years in the region that includes Angola, South Bend, and Fort Wayne, IN, Battle Creek, MI, and Toledo OH.

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