Many things seemed very familiar to me this morning. "Did you bring your signed report card?", "Hurry up, the school bus is about to leave!", "No, you'd better put on your sandals, it's 'gonna be hot today"... a normal start to the new school year in the German State of Nordrhein-Westfalen (NRW).
But a few things were very different. "Does everyone have their masks?", "Where's my laptop bag?" or "Do I have enough disinfectant in the car?" were all new topics for discussion on this special day.
A special day, not only because a new, Coronavirus-influenced school year is beginning, but also because today was to be my first on-site Workshop (after the lockdown) at a customer site in northern Germany.
Finally! Of course in compliance with the current regulations, with mouth-and-nose protection and with a lot of personal distance, but on-site with "real" people.
Throughout the past few weeks we've learned to design our consulting projects online with virtual boards, online surveys, etc. Of course this also works very well.
But one thing can't possibly be replaced by all of this:
the direct contact with colleagues and clients, nice conversations during Workshop breaks, or the view of the fantastic sunrise upon my arrival.
I'm looking forward to being with my team again soon – at your site. From a distance, but at least on-site. And if that doesn't work out in the next few weeks either, we look forward to having a virtual meeting with you.
... Without sandals, of course ;-)