Although the coronavirus pandemic’s effect on the economy and environment cannot be understated, it has also had widespread effects on human interaction and society as a whole. As the world heads into a post-covid world, we will be heading into a workplace with new social rules and sanitary etiquette procedures, which are hardly the ‘going back to normal’ which many people expected. This era of social distancing and changing etiquettes is the ‘coronavirus culture’ which will have developed as an aftershock wave of the pandemic.
When it comes to office life, even online interactions have changed. Simple interactions such as when to involve yourself in a conversation or intrude in a meeting when you are not involved have changed. Although these may seem relatively arbitrary, all of these tiny adjustments and changes we are unknowingly making have massive effects when carried out by a whole society. The biggest change which will be seen will be the physical actions which used to be normal. As William Smith, a business writer at Big Assignments and Study demic, noted, “A casual office might hug, where this will be seen to be greatly reduced now. Even a formal office handshake may now be reduced to a simple ‘socially distanced’ nod.” How do we know in an office who is to go first when practicing social distancing and walking by someone? All of these little changed which are going to take place will affect the workplace and our culture as a whole. The fact that a whisper in a meeting will not take place due to hygiene reasons may change a lot more than we think.
How Have Communities & Families Changed?
Our communities, social circles, and families have all been massively affected by the past year, some positively and some negatively. Domestic life has expanded while social life has somewhat shrunk, and we have found new and different ways to be social which do not actually involve face to face interaction. As Tracy Dustin, a lifestyle blogger at Revieweal and OX Essays, asked, “Will retail shops be a part of our social life anymore or has online shopping become such a convenient custom that they simply will not have the place in our lives that they used to?”
Over the past year, different trends have faded in and faded out of our domestic and social lives. For the younger generation it was the rise in popularity of certain online apps and social media sites, for the homeowner it was the rise of DIY jobs and renovations which caused homeware and gardening shops to skyrocket in popularity over the course of coronavirus.
As lockdowns ease the growing anxiety towards potential new social cues and rules in public spaces and places grows. Imagine a group of seven friends with a social group limit of six…awkward right? Families and couples will also have to adjust to moving into a permanent coronavirus culture. Some domestic relationships have gotten closer and better over the course of isolation periods, and some have deteriorated rapidly. All of this will need to be considered as the world slowly opens up again.
Will the Workplace be Changed Forever?
So many people have gotten used to working from home without commute and unnecessary disruption and social interaction; will the return to the ‘daily grind’ alongside the commute and other factors really be helpful and/or possible? The upward progression and popularity of home working may be here to stay for some industries and some people in society as a hole, simply due to ease and alleviation of costs for businesses due to the lack of need for office space.
Personal finances have been affected in different ways over the past year. Some people have lost jobs and homes, and really struggled. However, some people have kept their incomes and saved money through lack of spending on holidays, restaurants, and unnecessary expense. Will spending return to what it used to be, or will the economy be transferred by COVID-19 just as we have been? It is strange to think that our world has been so irreparably affected by a virus which travelled around the world at lightning speed; but it has been. Coronavirus culture has forever changed our social and economic behaviors, and even had a permanent impact on our psyche.