WHILE most people are glad to see the back of a hellish 2020, they could well be turning towards uncharted waters and the deep blue sea of uncertainty of 2021.
While COVID-19 has played havoc with many lives, businesses and countries, the hurried development and delivery of a vaccine has brought some cheer over the holiday season.
But not so the emergence of a new mutation of the Coronavirus which continues to claim lives and spread widely.
Countries going into a fresh wave of tighter restrictions means we haven’t quite figured this one out yet. We may have got a handle on what we are doing wrong, but we haven’t figured out what we could do to correct the situation.
Sure, we are taking some wobbly and hopeful steps in that direction, which is what the vaccine is likely to be, but our track record against viruses isn’t the best.
Which brings us back to 2021 and our first WED WEB CHAT of the year, which takes place on 6 January at 12:45pm: 2021 Vision With 2020 Hindsight. (CLICK HERE to register.)
How exactly will businesses pick their way through 2021?
Even as measures ease up with more people able to meet, the unpredictable nature of COVID-19 and its shocking impact on the global economy will weigh on the minds of business leaders.
The panellists for 2021 Vision With 2020 Hindsight hail from a variety of industries.
Anthony Wong is the Founder and CEO of Creative Eateries. A through and through food and beverage man, Anthony started off in the hotel industry before taking the plunge into entrepreneurship and the restaurant business.
Some 36 years later, he has created 17 different restaurant concepts, 2 catering arms in the region, and has 44 outlets.
What will 2021 offer? Anthony’s advice: “Stay calm. Don’t panic. Be proactive.”
Haresh Khoobchandani is the Vice President of Sales, Autodesk Asia Pacific. In this leadership role, he is responsible for the strategic direction and profitability of the business, which is a global leader in 3D design, engineering and entertainment software.
Haresh has worked for a number of large organisations — Singapore Airlines, Microsoft and REA Group — gaining experience and learning all the time. He is driven by a strong desire to learn and transform through technology.
Through all this forward momentum, Haresh says to “look after our mental health”.
“We are focused on a lot of things pre pandemic. We are busy making a living and sometimes we forgot to live. Through the pandemic it was clear that we shouldn’t take our own mental health for granted. It’s what helps us build resilience and grit to see us through some of the most challenging and uncertain times we will all experience one our lives.”
Dr Sanjay Kuttan is the Executive Director of the Singapore Maritime Institute, which is responsible for funding maritime research projects with industry and building local capabilities in the sector.
He has had many senior roles in the private and public sectors — line management at ExxonMobil Asia Pacific, business development at Mobil Oil Australia, management consulting at McKinsey & Company, policy, industry development at the Energy Market Authority, business leadership at DNVGL Energy, and managing the NRF funded Smart Multi Energy System project at the Energy Research Institute at the Nanyang Technological University (ERI@N).
Sanjay is an advocate for sustainability and building new opportunities. His advice: “In times of a national crisis, patience, discipline and trust are three key virtues to hold on to ensure a nation collectively gets through with minimum heartache.”
Gibu Mathew is the Vice President and GM, Asia Pacific, of Zoho Corp, which enables businesses in all shapes and sizes to benefit from technology. Zoho’s software and business solutions are used by global, regional and local companies.
Gibu sets the strategy and vision for the region, and has helped many businesses benefit from complimentary access to some of its products during COVID-19. A 21-year veteran of the company, Gibu continues to spearhead numerous go-to-market strategies that prioritise product localisation for the region.
COVID-19 has seen a greater adoption of technology and Zoho has jumped in to ease the way. “Businesses will need integrated product suites as they strive for a smoother customer experience and employee experience. This, along with increased awareness on security and privacy, will drive technology adoption in the medium term,” reckons Gibu.
How will COVID-19 change the circumstances for these industries in 2021? Join the audience and pose our panellists your questions on 6 Jan 2021, at 12:45pm.
To register for the WED WEB CHAT: 2021 Vision With 2020 Hindsight, on 6 Jan 2021 (12:45pm) use this link: https://zurl.co/2kN9