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If one thing is for sure, it is that the age of telework has finally come. As COVID-19 forced businesses to rethink how to operate, more and more small business owners found that the one thing they didn’t need was an office. With the right equipment and software, many companies have been able to stay afloat with a skeleton crew and most support personnel working from home. This shift not only helps to manage company costs but also encourages the growth of distributed teams and a more scalable business model.

Another side effect of having more people work from home is a shift ways from a company structure focused on hierarchy and more concerned about job descriptions and competency. There is no way to use “water cooler politics” to get ahead when there is no water cooler. As businesses focus more on results a new office culture is taking shape.

Another shift since the pandemic is the use of electronic banking and payment services. People are increasingly using cashless methods to pay bills and shop in general. Add to this the shift of economic priorities of most households and we see increasingly that businesses have to be ready to go cashless and stay liquid. Luckily the crisis has also opened up many more partnership opportunities for startups and other agencies.

Startups are increasingly looking at creating more qualitative growth than quantitative growth. Establishing relationships and long-term customers will become more important than expanding your numbers. The quality of the relationship will matter much more as the global economy goes through changes. This means that even startups will begin to look at government contracts and distribution services more closely. This moment in time is also a good time for startups to begin doing more advanced quality control and rethinking the customer experience.

Of course, these changes present a number of challenges. One such challenge is finding employees that are comfortable in a teleworking environment. Many companies are finding that a significant portion of their talent simply isn’t suited to working from home. Finding a way to identify best-fit remote candidates is a challenge that hiring managers will need to address quickly. Another challenge is shifting to meeting the needs of a new economy. Money that was once spent on big-ticket items, or perhaps luxury goods is now being spent on emergency supplies. But, as always, with every challenge comes opportunity.