Last week I was on stage at the closing panel at #di2summit2020 Frankfurt together with Dr. Iris Henseler-Unger (former #bundesnetzagentur). I addressed the black #blackswan (#coronavirus) we are just facing and gave my #predictions on the #futureofwork and major future societal issues.
My expectations are IF (IF!) the #virus is here to stay for 12-24 months or longer (as leading experts from Berlin Charité as well as Harvard say that it can happen) our lives (and the way we work) will be permanently changed by then. You better are prepared for it, not only if you are in the conference/event business. 

You can read the (English language) transcript here:

Ladies and gentlemen let me just address the elephant in the room, in this room and every other conference room everywhere on the planet. It’s not exactly an elephant. It’s more or less what economists call the Black Swan. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung today had a major article on this. And it’s one of those probably.

Corona is a potentially world changing event. We’re not too sure yet but the propability is high.

You’ve all heard that not only the Geneva automotive fair but also other major fairs including the ITP tourism exhibition in Berlin as well as the “Hannovermesse “ have been canceled or at least significantly delayed. Some events have been delayed until next year or maybe even to 2022. You could also say, that they won´t happen. But what does this mean for our business? And I’m not talking about the conference business. I’m talking about infrastructure business. 

So just let me ask you a question: What will be if this virus is here to stay?
I’m not a doomsday propagandist and far from telling people to prep etc. But I just listened to what has been said by leading medical experts from Harvard Medical School as well as Berlin Charité Hospital. Both gave talks that mentioned that is probable to happen that 40 to 70 percent of the population in the US as well as in Europe will get the corona virus. They also told us that it can take up to 24 months to keep up with the problem. This is more or less the worst case scenario that the leading experts uh talking about. And listen gentlemen let me get this straight: The chances are that still there that Corona will be a problem of the past soon. 

But just think for a moment about the cancellations of the last few weeks and days, the travel bans, and your personal fears and propagate this 12 till 24 months into the future.  

Chances are that till then our behavior as humans as individuals as well as our behavior as part of the society will be significantly altered. These changes may be permanent at least in part even if Corona is defeated by then. Our lives and the way we work and stay together will have been permanently altered by then. 

So it can happen, that we have less personal contacts and rely on online relations more and more. We can already see this now. And if you’re lucky your company Network supports this kind of new work. But what does this mean for the future of business? 

Well, this good news if you’re a provider of infrastructure and related services. 

We are already seeing that the evaluation of companies like Zoom is on the rise. This as well as other companies providing remote work worth have already risen and is expected to rise. So if you want to go into business besides infrastructure maybe it’s a good point to take a look at this technology but let’s get back to the core. We need to rethink how we do things. We need to rethink our strategies in investing and we need to take into account that we currently do not know what will happen next. (…)