by Rebecca Davis

September is usually the time for refocusing: setting goals for the year, and getting back into the swing of things. This year, though, with a delayed provincial reopening plan and a new demi-wave of COVID, I’d been feeling a little glum.

Omnia Group’s Vertafore Virtual Convention—more specifically, the “Reflecting on a Year of Accelerated Transformation” session lead by Tonya DeVane—helped me break through the fog. She’s a master in healthy self-reflection, and talked about what it might look like during a global pandemic.

The world’s been in limbo for a while now, and it’s safe to say many are feeling the effects of it. But being aware of what you can change, and looking at the positives can make all the difference. After DeVane’s presentation, I reflected on the things I had deemed grim over the last year and flipped the telescope on them.


#1 Over-Communication —> More Ways to Work

DeVane discussed the accelerated saturation of digital B2B and B2C tools in insurance due to COVID. Other attendees agreed that daily digital happy hours and decompression meetings started to feel like a bit much; I definitely empathized.

On the flip side is the fact that people have found new and better ways to communicate than ever before. When I started out as a comms specialist last year, I was nervous about what my role might look like (based on the fact my previous experience in the industry was in-person and highly supervised). I discovered, though, that I’m able to self-motivate and connect with others without sacrificing productivity or experience.


#2 Financial Strain —> Prioritization

COVID has impacted many job sectors, from layoffs in hospitality to overrun healthcare units. My partner was temporarily laid off from his restaurant job 3 separate times, and, like many other Nova Scotians, had to opt for CERB payments. We undoubtedly felt the strain on our household.

This unpredictability forced us to regroup and reprioritize our financial goals, which initially seemed just that—forced. In the meantime, however, we adopted healthier budgeting habits. And now that things are a little less uncertain, re-prioritizing our goals has allowed us to save money.


#3 Uncertainty —> Resiliency

No country, company, executive team, or individual leader has been immune from COVID-19’s impact. Most of us have felt a great deal of uncertainty in one way or another. The ever-changing restrictions surrounding work, travel, family and  have given us a bit of pandemic whiplash.

But facing this uncertainty head-on has proven our resiliency. We’ve all been through a lot this past year; many have lost their jobs and even friends and family members. We made the tough decisions, though, and got through to the other side. And while it’s easy to focus on what we’ve lost, there’s something to be said for looking at the positives.