We will likely re-think, dis-invent, and repurpose the movie houses, lecture theatres, concert halls, stadia, malls, and massive gathering places, all rendered economically obsolete.
Pandemic-re-purposed, that’s what we’ll call them.
In good times we know converting office buildings to apartments, like most purpose-conversions, are inefficient and expensive money-pits of mistaken-ness.
Sometimes it’s easier to start fresh rather than reinventing something.
Nothing is certain – nothing is laid in concrete.
But it is, as it has always been, a function of what we want. We reinvent things all the time. We’ve lived in a society that only bulldozes things when they are worn out, and obsolete – cannot be used for anything else, and then we trash them in favour of the bigger, newer, better thing.
Suddenly, we are thinking smaller.
Smaller might be better.
It’s scary, and exciting, and small but important – fraught with risk, brimming with unexplored opportunities.
Why is my head in this mindset, this reflective view – backward and forward-looking at the same time?
I remember small, and I remember as vividly as I did on this date in 1980, 40 yrs. ago today, opening the office of MSK Financial Services Ltd. in Edmonton. Time has flown, so many things have happened, growth and shrinkage, successes, and failures, and hard lessons learned too many times – and I’ve never regretted the move that summer, from a reliable salaried job to freedom to fail.
That first cord-cutting step was the hardest, wrought with failure-fear.
The largest lasting lesson from that, is trusting one’s ability and wits when nobody else does, making that move is the business equivalent of the trapeze folks flying around under the circus tent without a net.
I’ve failed many times, and risk that again every day. The success hills have been sweet, and some of the valleys have been torture, darkness, and pain.
But what we learn, each time we have one of these new experiences of difficulty in life is that they aren’t fatal – they just feel that way the first time. Someone who has never been broke, or hungry, or shut out of the stream of their own joyous creation cannot imagine getting through it. But they do. They wake up the next day and start again – the ultimate do-over. And in time, we see risk differently – we see opportunity more bravely, and walk more confidently.
Forty years of seeing today, seeing tomorrow, and focused down the road of the future, with dreams and hopes for where that road might lead, and where we might build new roads.