‘New normal’ will rely on mutual trust factors

AS business gets set to reopen across Ireland and emerge hopefully from the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic the Business Show ran a daylong virtual symposium, attracting some of the best minds from across all sectors of the economy.

Ireland’s Business & Finance Magazine editor Sarah Freeman opened and moderated a number of talks at the Business Show

The event last April, the second since launching in 2020 by the Business & Finance Media Group was designed to help guide businesses to be ready for the post-pandemic world of commerce and trading.

Anne O’Leary, Sarah Freeman and Paul Kelly in discussion at the Business Show

The gradual return to business as normal will require an inherent trust among business owners and the workers who staff them, more flexibility on how people will work as opposed to how they once did and a solid dose of open communication.

“Give people more information than you probably would have given them in the past, communicate more and then give them the freedom to make decisions they need to make trusting that they have the right contextual information,” said Irish tourism’s Failte Ireland CEO Paul Kelly in the opening talk of the web summit. “It is that flexibility of enabling people to fit work around their lives in a way that works better for them. It means that they will be more productive as well as having a better quality of life.”

Professor Luke O’Neill and Irish Independent Newspapers Business Editor in discussion at the Business Show

The timing could not be better to implement such a strategy of trust as described by Mr Kelly as all sectors from business to social communities emerge chrysalis-like from a cocoon brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. The key idea of its success may lie in a patient approach, navigating the way through what is essentially the birth pangs of the ‘new normal’.

“It has been a huge learning for us and for the 2.3 million customers we have in Ireland, it was really about supporting them,” said Vodafone CEO Anne O’Leary, one of 70 speakers among 30 sessions across the Business Show’s two virtual stages. “Our first focus was on our people, keeping them safe and getting them set up remotely to be able to support our customers. The demand for connectivity was never greater.”

Paul Kelly, CEO of Irish tourism’s Failte Ireland

With speakers including Bank of Ireland group CEO Francesca McDonagh, Kinzen CEO and co-founder Mark Little, TCU Biochemistry Chair and immunologist Luke O’Neill and Eir CEO Carolan Lennon the Business Show has placed much of the onus of recovery on such leaders and how skills and knowledge can reboot and potentially reinvent the Irish economy.

Tags: The Business Show #rebootingireland #irishbusiness #expleo

Image credits: Business Show, Failte Ireland

Kim Mullahey

Kim Mullahey is Pynck.com’s Ireland Correspondent. She holds an honours undergraduate degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Chicago and has taught Adult Education Creative Writing Studies. Through a media career spanning nearly 25 years Kim has written and photographed regional news, national and international horse sports, fashion and lifestyle. Kim lives with her husband and son in Kildare Ireland, and a stray marmalade cat who has adopted the family.

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