We may never come to a clear conclusion about what caused the pandemic.
But what is clear is that it has upended just about every aspect of our lives and has unleashed unprecedented forces for change in just about every part of our personal and professional lives.
Following two years of disruption, the war in Ukraine has upended the world’s geopolitical order. It is causing dislocations to the world’s financial markets and the global energy industry, creating food shortages, generating a refugee crisis, causing widespread disruption to the supply chain, and fueling institutional distrust.
Many of these changes were already underway before the Covid-19 rampage started. However, the pandemic is the lens that has magnified their impact. It is the catalyst that has unleashed widespread frustration and a backlash against current leaders and societal trends. At the same time, it has accelerated innovative change and the demand for systemic reform.
Whatever the outcomes—this is now the foundry in which our future is being forged.
Times of turbulence are times of opportunity
In his article Failure’s Fallout, Bruce Mehlman shows how major crises have a fallout effect that generates a backlash against the status quo and accelerates innovative change and reform.
Mehlman’s article prompts both organizations and workers dealing with the challenges of a post-pandemic world to recognize that the “new normal” will not be the “old normal” and consider how they can best take advantage of new opportunities as the future unfolds.
All of us have a choice—do we seize the opportunity to shape our future, or do we just become victims of the outcomes.
This opens an opportunity for people thinking about a career in consulting because…
Many people are actively seeking a career change
On the other hand, many employers are finding it challenging to find the talent they need
In addition to these push-pull motivations for a career change, several critical enablers exist that are making it easier for people who are considering a consulting career.
The relationship between work and people has changed.
Innovations in digital platforms are enabling Work from Anywhere (WFA)
We are experiencing a seismic shift in the world of work…
In the early days of the pandemic, there was widespread optimism that the disruptions would be short-lived, that people would soon be back working in the office, and that life would soon be back to normal.
It turned out that this was not the case.
As things dragged on, people learned to adapt to having the kids at home, the necessities of homeschooling, learning to share working space in small accommodations, and connecting with teammates in a virtual world.
After the initial shock and the challenges of figuring out how to keep the show running, people found some real positives in the new arrangements. Many parents discovered new joys in spending time with their children and families and found increased hours in the day without the stress, cost, and time spent in the daily commute.
Employers were surprised by the unexpected pushback when they started to plan for return to the office and set deadlines for the return. And, they were indeed surprised by the sudden waves of resignations from employees who were resisting return to the old ways and, in many cases, had come to the realization that they had options and wanted a better life.
Anne Raimondi, The COO of ASANA, has summed up the impact of the pandemic on the world of work.
“The unprecedented disruption of the pandemic has fundamentally shifted the way we live, including rethinking work and our relationship with it.”
The Golden Age of Consulting…
The dictionary defines a Golden Age as a flourishing period in some aspect of life.
The disruptions we live through are indeed heralding a Golden Age for consultants.
Dr. Sahar Yousef, cognitive neuroscientist and a lecturer at the Berkley Haas School of Business, sums up the situation. “The world is in motion. Organizations need to embrace the reality that change is the only constant. Organizations that don’t will be left in the dust.
We need to be doing more than just preparing for the future—we need to be making a plan for the future.”
Marketers are always quick to pick up on any new trend, and consulting is no different.
There is already a proliferation of marketing aimed at consultants that focuses on the glossy superficialities of high consulting fees, luxury lifestyle, and working from poolside cabanas.
However, consulting is not for everyone, and you would be wise to dig a little deeper into the possibilities before you commit to a switch to a consulting career.
It makes all the difference if you work with someone who has walked that path before.