COVID-19: Could homeworking and homeschooling change the business world for the better?

There has been a lot of talk in the press about how the recent surge in homeworking may cause a more permanent shift towards more homeworking in the future. For many businesses, this change has been a challenge, but one they have met head on.

But working from home isn’t the only change many of us have found to our working lives. Many of us are now homeschooling our children too, and it is the ramifications of this change that will be far more impactful on our future. Could the current period of homeschooling be a catalyst for broader positive social change, particularly for women in the workplace, as they will quickly see their full potential and emerge from the crisis with a renewed confidence in their abilities?

It is worth remembering that great leaders are not created; they emerge when the situation demands it. The COVID-19 outbreak, along with the uncertainty, anxiety and disruption it has brought to our lives, is the single biggest challenge most of us have ever faced. But it is also showing us the incredible strength of leadership and community. Across the country people are stepping up to help their friends and neighbours for no other reason than just to help.

The lockdown will also show many women that they CAN raise a family while also pursuing senior roles in their career. The positive changes in mindset over the next three months will be game-changing, especially for many women who will see what they can accomplish when the situation demands it.

In time, this could change the nature of business as we know it, as more women will have the confidence to pursue those top jobs. Ultimately, this should help us to see more women leaders in the FTSE 100, and in more senior roles across the board.

The long-term impact of this short-term change will not just be more home working, but more flexible working, more compassionate businesses, and a new breed of leaders that will push through more family-centric business models. For any person who cares for others (whether that be children, grandmothers, carers of elderly/disabled, or anyone who just wants a better work life balance), that looks like a much better world to me.

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