Unlearn and Relearn are the keys to survive the ‘new normal’ amidst COVID-19 pandemic, say HR experts

Jaipur: When the students and employees are quite perturbed about their future amidst the coronavirus pandemic, leading educational Institute JK Lakshmipat University(JKLU), in association with National HRD Network (NHRDN), organized a webinar on “Navigating into Future – Readiness for New Normal”, which presented a roadmap on how the world would be once the pandemic subsides. The webinar, which was hosted by the Career Services & Outreach office of JKLU and moderated by Mr. Shounak Biswas, Asst Director Development, JKLU, was viewed live by 638 people, including the who’s who of the HR industry and faculty and students of higher educational institutions across the country.

The 2-hour long webinar was inaugurated by Dr. RL Raina, Vice-Chancellor, JK Lakshmipat University, Jaipur, who welcomed the Keynote SpeakerMr A Sudhakar, Head Human Capital & CSR, Dabur India Ltd and the esteemed panelists Mr. Vineet Thukral, Director, Microns India Ltd; Mr Rajesh Sharma, Director, Urihk Pharmaceuticals Pvt Ltd, and Mr ShalabhSangal, VP &Director Operations, Moriroku Technology India Pvt Ltd, for being a part of the online session.

“We are fortunate to organize this webinar with such a learned panel. The topic is very relevant to today’s times and also goes down well with JKLU’s core value. JKLU started in 2011 with a vision that it will become the university for the future. JKLU believes in flexibility and giving full freedom to its students in their thought process. Our university is very much aligned with the government’s NEP 2020, which has been tabled after extensive research of almost five years. We are also a COVID-responsive organization. Within no time, we shifted our whole educational module online, the moment COVID-19 started spreading,” said Dr. Raina.

Adding on to Dr Raina’s thoughts, Dr RS Dabas, Advisor Career Development, JKLUsaid, “JK Lakshmipat University has an industry-academic interface. The objective of the webinar is to guide the young mind into seeing what’s there in the future. As we are all going through tremendous anxiety because of the uncertainty, we should not sit back and try to surmount this situation. We should not forget the fact that any uncertainty leads to opportunity.”

Mr. A Sudhakar, in his keynote address, gave a detailed presentation on how to overcome the situation. He divided his presentation into three categories – new normal, impact on employees and organization, and how employees and organizations can navigate the ‘new normal’. “In Dabur, we have utilized these 4-5 months for innovation. We unlearned and relearned a few things and launched 50 products in this phase. We took a consumer-needed approach. New normal has become a reality today. As a company, we had to go through many transformations including renegotiating the cost of recruitment and cost-management of employees, among others. The pandemic has paved the way for physical and mental well-being,” he said.

Mr. Vineet Thukral said, “The economy will bounce back in the coming months we should focus on making students job-ready. Fresh graduates and budding entrepreneurs should identify the green shoots of the economy which are growing and pursue their chosen areas with full passion, dedication, hard work, and commitment.”

Mr. Rajesh Sharma termed the ‘new normal’ as a game-changing event. “We are currently in the Industrial Revolution 4.0 and it’s all a digital revolution. A recent report of the World Economic Forum suggests that almost 50 percent of jobs will change in the next five years with 52 percent focus of machines and 48 percent on humans. This shows that the job scenario will be bad in the coming years. But at the same time, jobs will be created in areas like AI, Block Chains, IoT among others. So, companies have to focus more on resilience than efficiency,” he added.

Mr. ShalabhSangal highlighted that ‘new normal’ means becoming more resilient. “Those who will be able to cope up with the challenges of today’s uncertain times are going to be the true winners of the future. The true challenge for the industry is to prepare themselves for a very aggressive bottom constitution and severe changes in management functions. Economy anyhow is going to bounce back in a big way but with many new normals,” said Mr. Sangal.

The stellar cast of speakers was brought together by Mr. Prem Singh, President HR, JK Organization and President, NHRDN (Delhi NCR Chapter). Mr. Singh, while thanking the speakers for their words of wisdom, mentioned, “What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are very tiny matters compared to what lies inside of us. All of us together will emerge stronger, with new business models, skills, competencies, and experience – and what stands by us is our learning”.

The Q&A session drew a lot of pertinent questions from the audience, which were addressed with panache by the eminent panel of speakers. To sum up the deliberations, Mr. Sudhakar advised, “Don’t Waste a Crisis” and Dr Raina added, “Update & Upgrade yourselves, personally, professionally and spiritually”.

The webinar came to an end with a vote of thanks from Dr. Dabas.