Remember the time when we could travel across the world? What about when we could eat out at a restaurant or attend a concert? Or even when shaking hands was socially acceptable?

Think back to 2016. Though it may seem not so long ago, we forget how fast everything progresses. For instance, in 2016, the latest iPhone you could buy was the iPhone 7, and Google Home was only just being released – there have been 12 new iPhones released since then, and our smart homes are smarter than us!

Nobody could have guessed that a global pandemic would completely change the way we live our lives. From mask-wearing to covid check-ins, from zoom calls to home-schooling, and not being able to track down any toilet paper – it’s easy to miss our pre-covid world, especially when we don’t know when a post-covid world will be a reality.

From this, it’s clear that a lot can change in five years — a LOT.

It’s easy to forget what ‘normal’ looked like. And although the last five years have presented many challenges, we have loved watching Global IQ Group grow and evolve to meet them.

So, to celebrate our 5th birthday, we’d love to share our insights on five important trends that we have observed so far!

1. Working from home becomes the norm

In the olden days (pre-2016), I remember when working from home was frowned upon. A request to work from home would sometimes be met with a distrusting look from your manager.

In light of the pandemic, WFH has become a way of life for millions of people worldwide. It is inspiring to see how many businesses have adapted to such unpredictable circumstances.

With all of this newfound productivity, there is a dark side to working from home. Zoom fatigue and the lack of physical social interaction is real. WFH may not always be easy, but with the right mindset, technology, and balance, we are fortunate that this is a trend that’s here to stay!

Read more – How to Overcome the Dark Side of Working From Home

2. Indoor air quality goes mainstream

In 2015, I remember doing some client research on indoor air quality. At the time, we found Australia was lagging behind the rest of the world in indoor air quality standards.

But who could blame us? As the Lucky Country, with ample supply of fresh outside air, we didn’t have the same smog or pollution issues faced by the cities Los Angeles, Bangkok or Guangzhou.

Fast forward to 2020. Faced with unprecedented levels of smoke from Australia’s bushfires and the threat of airborne viruses, people everywhere are becoming more aware of the importance of the air we breathe.

You are what you breathe. Every day the average person breathes in over 11,000 litres of air. So, when McKinsey starts featuring ventilation and air purification, you know that this trend is no longer the niche of HVAC&R professionals.

We’re proud to have worked with leaders in the IAQ space. It’s their passion (and now ours) and making the invisible visible is key to better health and wellbeing.

3. Net Zero

On a positive note, it’s been great to work with Net Zero heroes leading the way as we transition to a climate positive future.

The newest IPCC report has highlighted the importance of working together and combining forces to combat climate change dangers such as:

  • • an increase in flooding, droughts, and heatwaves
  • • a continued rise in sea levels
  • • the melting of glaciers and ice sheets
  • • reduced oxygen levels impacting us and the ocean

The good news is that with the rise of renewable energy technology and innovation, the path towards Net Zero is gaining more and more traction. Together, we can make a real impact.

4. Digital transformation and how to get noticed in a virtual world

Gone are the days of face-to-face conferences and networking. With the recent impacts of Covid-19 on the way many businesses operate, the rules of marketing have been completely transformed.

Having worked with over 100 small and medium businesses in the past 12 months, I understand firsthand the challenges many small, medium and larger enterprises are facing. One observation is that the traditional sales and marketing tactics are becoming less effective and, in some cases, almost obsolete.

Surviving and thriving in a pandemic is now all about digital transformation. Digital transformation is more than just a good website, SEO and social media. Thinking outside the box and developing strategies that enhance the user experience to engage with your customers is the key to organisational success.

We’ll be sharing our thoughts with some leading experts in this arena. To find out more, register your interest for our upcoming Lunch and Learn webinar

5. Mental Health and Wellbeing

Social distancing, isolation and lockdown have not made living through a pandemic easy.

It is more important than ever to reach out and support one another during this time. We all know someone who has suffered from mental health issues. Sometimes, it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

One trend I am glad to see is a better understanding of mental health in the workplace. It’s OK, not to be OK. Opening up the conversation about mental health and wellbeing is crucial for coping with the many changes the last 5 years have thrown at us.

Read more – The importance of mental health and wellbeing in the workplace

To show our support for the Global IQ community, we are hosting a Wellness Wednesday event. If you or someone you know needs some time out (and a bit of a laugh), please join us for a lunchtime yoga and wellbeing session. Drop us a line and we’ll send you the details. Best of all it’s free!

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Finally, on behalf of Nathan, myself and the whole Global IQ Group Team, we want to say Thank You to all our supporters in our journey. We could not do what we do without you.

We hope to see you soon and look forward to partying like it’s 2016 again!