A lot of companies are coming out with their formal response to the Coronavirus, along with sage advice on what to do.
Thinking of that reminded me of the time I worked for the Department of Aviation. Among other things I managed the contract for services for people who were homeless. I got a call from the on-site supervisor of the program. “There’s a guy here so covered with lice you can literally see them jumping off his body. Who should I call?”
My first thought was “the on-site supervisor of the homeless program.” The second was “if you are calling me. We’re screwed!”
When You’re Called Upon, Do What You Can
That said, I was called upon to solve that problem, so I did. After wallowing for a minute I addressed it pragmatically. What’s the essence of the problem? Is it a safety and security issue? A health issue? That guided me to the right person to call and it was resolved.
All kinds of new challenges are being foisted upon us in this new day-to-day reality with the Coronavirus. When asked—whether by a family member, co-worker, neighbor, client, stranger—help when you can.
Seek Out Ways to Apply What You Can Do
“Do something,” says Chris Brogan (who Forbes called one of the “Must Follow Marketing Minds”). “Who can you help?” he prods. “How can you help?” He urges you to think. And then says, “do it.”
The way you can help right now might not be what you expected. Some of it for me is marketing. I am working with clients to enhance their online presence, deepen their writing, find new ways to communicate—responding quickly as the world changes, impacting their businesses and projects.
But I’m also an aerobics instructor. My biggest contribution to help others during the COVID-19 pandemic might be my “Exercise Solution” videos that give exercise solutions to home confinement challenges: The “Squat and Eat”, the “Twist and Nap.” (See the videos here.) If I can help by making someone laugh—then that’s doing something and helping.
It’s like the movie Groundhog Day.
When Bill Murray discovered that time had stood still for him, he ultimately used the time to make himself better. The positive side of everyone sheltering at home is that, if we take it, it gives us time to reflect.
What can you do to keep your own mind creative and active, and what can you contribute to help others? Now go do it.