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2020 – Annus Horribillis

7 December 2020

By Justine Eden, Director, Eden Ritchie Recruitment 

Justine Eden, Director, Eden Ritchie Recruitment 2020 2021 pandemic adaptability resilience hiring still continued Merry Christmas

I have been in business for 25 years, during that time I have experienced booms and busts, the 2009 GFC, 9/11, the introduction of technology that claimed would be the end of the recruitment sector, the end of the fax machine and resumes received in the post. This year 2020 delivered a whole new challenge – a pandemic. As the year rolled out we had to adapt to staying closer to home and working from home in an effort to prevent infection. Like any change it’s been difficult at times and rewarding at others.

Trying to anticipate how bad things were going to get, how much our business might be impacted came down to daily forecasts – gone were monthly, quarterly, half yearly. Throw in a State Election and we had the perfect storm in a State largely driven by government recruitment. The complete lack of control, the rollercoaster ride of infection rates all added to our collective anxiety levels, coupled with greater levels of isolation working from home.

It’s been said “If you don’t bend you break” and hasn’t this year been a test of that? Of our adaptability, our resilience, our creativity, our determination, our commitment, our empathy….  Hiring still continued during COVID, interviews went online, contractors continued to work – from home, people that had never met in person started working closely (remotely) together. People highly trained in certain professions had to pivot, no longer having employment opportunities in their sector, pilots became shelf packers, flight attendants became call centre workers.

Of course we are not in the clear and who knows where we are headed? As one proverb states “There is nothing certain, but the uncertain”. Speaking as someone who likes to feel in control, this year has meant I have had to focus on things or activities that made me feel like I was still moving, contributing, learning; while still attempting to manage and protect my business and those around me.

Novelist Margaret Drabble stated “When nothing is sure, everything is possible” and for me that is what 2021 has to be all about. Accepting uncertainty as much as possible, some days that is easier than others, BUT with a resolute focus on the now. The possibility, the opportunity, the renewal that change brings. Taking collective responsibility and making that our laser focus – on how each one of us can play a part in taking this forward. For there is a lot of work to be done and the whole is greater than the part – a focus on rebuilding, making a contribution – no matter how small, every single day. Looking back on each day acknowledging what you have done to take things forward – not just for yourself but for the collective.

I wish you and your loved ones a Merry Christmas and a happy, productive and rewarding 2021.

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