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From Reframing a Crisis to Redesigning a Future

By Elaine Cercado

We all have our stories to tell about the impact of covid-19 crisis to our life. In the future, when our grand children would ask what we could remember about the covid-19 crisis and how the world has survived it, our stories would be filled with different layers of emotions. 


For an optimist like me, I’ve reframed the crisis as an opportunity, and have chosen to do a series of swift actions to respond to the crisis and build resilience.

For instance, when our company chose to offer free online coaching to the public during the lockdown, I participated right away. The public response was overwhelming, which made the calendars of coaches busier than ever. 

By giving time to partner with, listen and support a coachee to arrive at a certain decision, path, plan or action, I re-anchored myself to a bigger purpose that gave meaning to the ongoing crisis and chaos. 

This reverberated to the coachees loud and clear. The uncertainties of times have made many anxious about their and family’s future. 

Part of coping with the crisis and building resilience was making meaningful sense of the crisis and anchoring to a bigger purpose. 

When we decided as a company to develop and give free webinars on the impact of covid-19 to the business and organization, I dedicated time to research and develop content about a crisis I had zero knowledge about.

At the end of the research and preparation for the webinars, I knew enough that I could educate others about the impact of covid-19 to businesses and organizations, and the strategies to consider to build capacity for the tsunami of continuous changes beyond the current crisis. 

The Q&A and feedback we gathered during and after the webinars with the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines and with the Eastern Telecommunication have inspired us at POWERinU to keep going.


As we plan to return to work by phase, there are important questions to face. 

  • Am I ready for the next normal? 
  • At the personal level, what have I learned from the crisis, and what will I specifically do about it? 
  • At the community or global level, how can I contribute to ensure our future generations are better prepared for a crisis of this magnitude, one that affected over 6.5 million people and caused over 386,000 deaths and unquantifiable pains or sufferings for their families?

These are hard questions I will not even attempt to answer here. But I will start with what I can control – my personal mindset, decisions and actions.

I recently listened to the podcast interview with Alex Osterwalder, which talked about the exploit and explore mindset. From a work and business perspective, the challenge is testing and turning the many explored ideas into value propositions that internal or external customers care about – with speed! The other challenge is scalability of these new or redefined value propositions.

The explore mindset is something I have adopted to redesign work, life and the future. Together with partners in POWERinU, we are now rapidly prototyping and testing programs and solutions that we believe respond to what our customers care about.

Yet while it is imperative to act with speed, it is prudent to remain safe. We must learn from the hard lessons of these past 6 months so we can move forward steadily with hope and optimism into our redesigned future. 

I have yet to think of an answer when our future grand children would ask how the world has survived the covid-19 crisis. For sure, our stories would be filled with different layers and mix of emotions. After all, the crisis has changed the world and our lives forever.