COVID-19 Outbreak Impact On Local Business

The social and economic effects of the Covid-19 virus are slowly being felt in our region, resulting in the loss of high stakes in business for many players. The Kenyan Government has banned all conferences of ‘international nature’ with over 15 people thanks to the coronavirus virus. At least two international meetings that were scheduled to be held in Nairobi have been postponed due to coronavirus concerns. More than 100,000 people have been infected by the virus and over 3,200 have died of the disease around the world.

If the lessons from the East and West were anything to go by, it will mean that soon, the government will have to quarantine some areas, stop more and more gatherings to prevent the spread of the virus. A statement on the English Premier League’s website said: “The Premier League fair-play handshake will not take place between players and match officials from this weekend until further notice based on medical advice. Further to that, Liverpool the Premier League leaders announced on Thursday that they would not be having mascots at Anfield. Sure enough, more industries will have to act to prevent the spread of the virus.

What about Kenya? What about our many gatherings that take place in schools, offices, churches, mosques and the like? Are we prepared or are we just panicking? An opinion article from Al Jazeera reiterates the need for Kenya to avoid panicking and start putting measures in place to protect herself.

Would your office (for those who have big offices and teams), your school, your mosque or your church be able to survive if all meetings were banned as precautionary measures? Yesterday, the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) directed all its secretariat staff not to shake hands in an effort to prevent spread of Coronavirus in the event that the epidemic hits Kenya. For instance, the religious gatherings may actually be most affected.

It is time to actively think digital in all spheres of the society. For schools and religious groups, here are some tips

(1) Do you have a database of all your attendees? Does that information enable you to understand the digital habits of your attendees e.g. Do they have home Wi-Fi?

(2) Do you currently digitally stream your meeting experiences? (i.e. offline to online e.g. live-streaming, live casting)

(3) Are you plugged into the relevant financial platforms to enable digital payments.

At this juncture, it appears that digital evolution is not just an option, but a solution.

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