This year – 2020 – will come to an end. And with the passage of time it will appear small and nondescript. But not yet. Not now. Too soon.
For nearly all, this has been a challenging, if not difficult, if not nearly impossible, year to traverse. Perhaps Queen Elizabeth summed it up best (in Latin) during her November 24, 1992 remarks at Guildhall as an “annus horribilis”, a “horrible year”. Marked largely by the COVID-19 pandemic and its wake, but also with an eye to worldwide civil unrest roiling over onto the streets, most people were simply not prepared for the sorts of personal, health, professional, and financial dislocations which have emerged.
Even if the same people were already engaged in proactive risk management. Because proactive risk management is built upon a foundation of predictable environmental risk. And little of 2020 was predictable.
And it is not yet over.
So what are we, who have to live our lives and manage our business, no matter what ‘raises its ugly head’, to glean from all of this? That we are resilient.
By that is meant the big ‘We’ we can survive. We can cope, adapt, and be flexible, even in the face of unpredictability. Society is resilient. Businesses are. And individuals are.
And most importantly we can learn. We can observe, absorb, and adapt from our environment. Even when it appears as constantly shifting sands.
We can develop and implement new systems. Show of hands – How many of ‘Us’ have worked remotely during this period? Perhaps by spending far more screen-time than ever imagined? How many have drastically reduced their gasoline usage? How many have met, when needed, outdoors? Or separated by large distances indoors? Who ever thought hospital masks would become quasi-fashion items? And that shields would become readily available. How many have gone cash-less?
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These new action-ways come from our own minds (yes, we all have the capacity to be creators) or by observing what others do, absorbing them to our own purposes, and adapting them to our best and highest uses. Wrap those outcomes in protective measures such as new policies, practices, and procedures, as well as insurance coverages (such as business interruption coverage) and contract provisions (such as updated force majeure provisions), and we have resilience in-action.
But do not rest on one’s laurels. Again…2020 is not over. Learn its lessons. Be vigilant (not paranoid). Always strive to learn. Be flexible about being flexible.
And, ‘keep on keeping on’. It is just what we have to do, so let us do it well.
* No footnotes!
Information about Bogin, Munns & Munns’ own response to Coronavirus readiness.
– For more information, call Philip N. Kabler of the Gainesville, FL office of Bogin, Munns & Munns at 352.332.7688, where he practices in the areas of business, banking, real estate, and equine law. He has taught business and real estate law courses at the University of Florida Warrington College of Business Administration and Levin College of Law and is the President-Elect of the Eighth Judicial Circuit Bar Association.
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