We’re all experiencing a lot of fear and uncertainty around this Coronavirus. Especially for people with health concerns, right? The uncertainty of contracting it and what that means, what the recovery rate is, and so on. There have been over a thousand deaths reported, but over a hundred thousand cases, so at least it’s not a terminally fatal thing, right?
But it’s also creating a lot of fear in the stock and bond markets, and in the real estate market too. We’re waiting for leadership to kind of take hold of a response, in a strategy which is not concerted across countries or regions. It’s very individualistic from a state-level response in the US to finally more of a national, concerted response to focusing on fiscal and economic and monetary stimulus.
And right as China starts to get this under control, people are starting to go back to work, the supply chain is starting to coalesce, we start to see all these cases really start to grow in the United States and in the Western Hemisphere. So this has created a lot of uncertainty. It’s showing how volatile and how kind of fragile our markets are and the global economy is. If just one or two major economies start to falter, whether it’s something like this or a climate disaster, it can really throw things into complete disarray.
We approached bear market territory with almost a 20% reduction in the stock market and in values within just a few short weeks. Simply because of the fear surrounding this Coronavirus: What it’s doing internationally and with all of the moratoriums on travel, the self-imposed quarantines, countries taking drastic measures we’ve never seen before. It’s scary, right?
But there are a few things we can do to control the things within our sphere of influence. It’s actually a great time to be doubling down on education, on investing in ourselves, on trying to be more educated. Investing in our skills, investing in the fact that this is increasingly a virtual world.
Look at all the employers right now that are mandating workers to work from home. Companies like Microsoft, Google, and Facebook are having a lot like tens of thousands of employees in major centers, right in the US from New York, Seattle, and LA to San Francisco working home and remotely. So we need to, as workers and individuals make sure that our skillset is one that is transferrable and marketable and is also virtual, right?
So there’s a couple of things we can do to that end. We can make sure that one, we’re really, really good communicators. That we know how to get across our point of view, to deliver value, to be productive and efficient, and to collaborate, work within teams and be a leader even if we’re doing so virtually and not in the confines of a physical office.
A couple of other things. It’s now a great time to invest in that course you were thinking about. To grow your skillset in a functional area, maybe in your business that’ll help you get that promotion or take your business or your venture to the next level. Or start that new passion project or create that initiative and that project that you’ve wanted to do to impress your boss.
Whatever it may be, now’s a good time to build the skillset. You’re working from home, you’ve got a little bit more time. Maybe we’re trying to see how this all shakes out. Go buy that course, right? Go work with that coach. Go try to take your skill level, your network, and your whole vision and goal around what the next level is going to be, and advance that, push that forward. Surround yourself with the thoughts, the ideas, the mentorship, the inspiration, and the community to get to the next level.
There are things out of our control, such as the market, the government’s response, the global economy. So let’s focus on the things we can control when all the world around us seems to be out of control. Stay safe, let’s keep our loved ones, our family, and friends safe. Let’s educate ourselves and double down on those things we can control.