CliffCentral Covid

Well, this is more of a blog than anything I’ve written for a while… Covid has come to CliffCentral. We like coming up with clever alliterative phrases for new ideas and divisions in the business – like CliffCentral Communications, CliffCentral Campus, CliffCentral Creative and CliffCentral Collaborations. Now we have CliffCentral Contagions. With only four of us not testing positive or developing symptoms, CliffCentral has an infection rate of 60-70%. I suspect many companies have already been through this and more. It has forced us to cut costs, downsize (or, for some companies, right-size), take all operations online and work from home. The benefits have, surprisingly, been astonishing.

I’m sure it’s not news to anyone in any business – but by cutting travel, office small-talk, coffee breaks, long in-person meetings and other things, many us have been more productive and efficient than ever before. Of course there are some things that can never be replaced, and some jobs that wouldn’t work without people being physically present, but I’m proud of our team and the way they’ve adapted to change. Our daily morning show has been broadcasting from my house to the studio in Rivonia every day – with Siya Sangweni, other team members, guests and clients joining the conversation online. This meant that we finally pressed the button on video – making the show live on YouTube for the first time in 7 years. Just yesterday, I loadshedding-proofed my home studio to make sure we have no more interruptions, but we’ve pretty much been there every day since lockdown started over a year ago.

The quality of the conversation hasn’t diminished and the audience has doubled since this time last year. Clearly people have more time to listen, and are much more discerning about what they listen to, from a podcast point of view. There are also explosions of new podcasts and live audio internet shows all over the world, and I’m thrilled we were able to do the heavy lifting for podcasting in South Africa just a few years ago. Companies and brands are also seeing (now more than ever) the value of communicating with their staff, partners, customers and the public at large in an authentic and powerful way, using podcasting.

Since the disruptions to our lives are likely to continue for some time, we have also partnered with renowned psychologist Dr Hanan Bushkin, and our plan is to help businesses help their staff deal with the tremendous changes in the workplace, in their relationships and in society. The best way to do this is with live workshops (available as podcasts afterwards) that address the specific challenges people face with real, practical, no-bullshit help. Contact us – we think this is the future of HR, internal communications and keeping staff teams engaged.

The exciting opportunities of Covid, lockdowns, working from home and figuring out new ways of doing things are waiting to be exploited, and it’s so easy to fall into negativity and complain. CliffCentral will help you, your business and your family find new ways to be informed, entertained, empowered and inspired, join us!

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