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“The past year has shown us how quickly we can adapt to new ways”

In conversation with Mr. Murali Krishna Gannamani, MD & CEO, Fluentgrid Ltd.

What are your 3 biggest learnings from the events of 2020?

Online is the new normal

Who would have thought that we could customize, deliver and take live complex integrated enterprise software solutions, working remotely, that too from homes? How about winning prestigious system integration projects from bidding to POCs to negotiations to contract signing to kickstarting the projects, everything from the comfort of our homes?

The pandemic forced us to the confines of our homes, yet we have been collaborating, delivering and winning as usual. What’s more? We were able to strike a better balance between work and life, spending more time with our loved ones, learning new skills and appreciating small things in life that bring us joy, which we seem to have missed all these years in the mad rush after things.

Distance is the new closeness

We were of the opinion that open offices and sufficient facetime is needed to build strong bonding among teams for collaborative work. But the pandemic has clearly demonstrated that those are not the pre-requisites; infact we have witnessed greater collaboration levels and productivity among teams working from remote locations, who are brought together against the common enemy, working for a common cause.

Sustainability is not about future, but now

As a company innovating smart energy and smart city solutions, we have been helping secure the future of this planet and it’s inhabitants with sustainable solutions. But, this pandemic taught us that the need is now, in the present, and we should act fast. So, we are accelerating our innovation efforts and are trying to induce a sense of urgency among the ecosystem players like cities, utilities and infrastructure companies to rethink on their sustainability goals and start taking necessary measures.

What do you think lies in store for the industry in 2021?

I think 2020 has helped individuals and organisations to realise that we can quickly adapt to new ways which otherwise we would have never thought of and could have never realised the inherent potential.

This should help us get stronger and be more resilient to such shocks in the future. This also helped individuals and organisations to realise that unless they continually innovate – individuals by upskilling/ reskilling, and organisations by introducing new products, services and business models they will become irrelevant and will not be able to withstand such unforeseen disruptions in the future.

Collectively as a team and as a community we can face any adversity if we are empathetic to each other. The pandemic has changed the perceptions for Individuals, organisations and even govts, and hopefully they will take proactive initiatives to be more prepared for such emergencies instead of taking things for granted.

Technology adoption will accelerate, and perhaps a new industry paradigm called as Industry 5.0 will emerge, which could be a combination of Digital + Resilience.

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