COVID-19 has made discussing the “new normal” nearly a full-time job for media pundits, professional services firms, and a host of self-anointed “pandemic experts,” all promising they hold the key to understanding the future. But, as American economist Edgar Russell Fiedler once warned, “He who lives by the crystal ball soon learns to eat ground glass.” Prediction—never easy in the most static of times—is all but impossible today.
That’s why we’ve introduced the term No Normal—a period characterized by an intensified sense of immediacy, a “permanent now” that forces us to live and do business in the moment—to describe how Kearney thinks about the immediate future. There is, in fact, nothing normal about it. Rather than focusing on the “new normal” that can’t be predicted, Kearney created the idea of the No Normal, to give our clients the practical tools and strategic and organizational agility to deal with both the immediate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and whatever happens next.