Learn to earn: How people are reskilling to survive the Covid era

The author emphasises on the need to hone skills such as problem-solving, risk management, effective communication, emotional intelligence, and to lead a healthy lifestyle to overcome the challenges brought upon by the pandemic.

Learn to earn: How people are reskilling to survive the Covid era

Friday November 20, 2020,

6 min Read

Undoubtedly, the Covid-19 pandemic has dealt a severe blow to the economy by substantially transforming every facet of it. The adversity of this pandemic has not just caused widespread unemployment, but it has affected most of the businesses as well. The impacts of this crisis are expected to last long. According to the World Bank, this pandemic has represented the deepest recession since World War Two, which will result in a substantial rise in extreme poverty.

Recent trends and the need to reskill

With work-from-home surfacing as the new normal and the wave of digitization across various segments, reskilling has become the need of the hour. Everyone has to develop new skills as learning is the mantra for survival. The acquisition of complete technical approaches has been accelerated in order to stimulate the smooth functioning of the work.

It has also influenced everyone to reskill new and efficient working methods to survive the Covid era. Moreover, the current situation has also influenced the skills employers are looking for in job candidates. This process has catalysed the pace of learning and made it more cost-effective such that it allows greater personalisation for learners and results in greater effectiveness.

Key changes

The sudden turmoil of the established world order makes reskilling more essential than ever to minimise a gap between the skills and the organisation's needs. Acquiring or demonstrating the following key skills over the next few months will make the flow of work as well the job hunting easy:

Leadership skills

During the uncertain times like the ongoing pandemic, strong leadership skills help to deliver exceptional outcomes. Leaders with loads of optimism are also highly needed at such times. Moreover, leaders should possess strong communication skills and have the ability to get their message across to people with ease and effectively. Amidst such uncertainty, good leaders should look at situations from multiple perspectives and consider solutions only after analysing all the possible scenarios and consequences of any actions.


Closely linked to leadership is another skill that is even more important in uncertain and challenging times: Problem-solving. It is all about using logic as well as imagination to make sense of a situation and come up with an intelligent solution. Pandemic or no pandemic, acquiring superior problem-solving skills are vital. Individuals exploring job opportunities or businesses must start developing this skill as one of their strengths. It will help them in building a variety of competencies such as creativity, imagination, critical or lateral thinking, logic and determination.

Emotional intelligence 

Dealing with the pandemic is emerging as a stressful condition for everyone. Given the scenario, everyone needs to determine their emotional and physiological needs. Therefore, this situation can be managed well with the help of emotional intelligence.

Moreover, it underpins professional relationships, interpersonal communications, and is even related to the ability for motivating others.

Ultimately, emotional intelligence is intangible, yet, it has a significant impact on almost everything we do.


The pandemic has disturbed our comfort zones and it has had a devastating effect on many businesses. Now is the time to foster creativity and innovation in the working models for the sake of survival. Each and everyone needs to develop creative skills in order to come up with new and innovative ways of doing things.

Creativity means thinking out-of-the-box and adding a touch of uniqueness to the work. In a post-coronavirus world, organisations will need human ingenuity to invent, dream up new products and ways of working. Hence, human creativity is going to be essential.


The pandemic crisis is compelling people to seize the available opportunities, challenge the status quo, combat uncertainties and lay their hands open to trying new and innovative things. It's time to accept failures as a learning phase.

However, those who are not up to the challenge will either be left behind or have to throw in the towel. Therefore, professionals with strong skills in opportunity-seeking, including how to bring out the best out of every critical situation will be in demand.

Risk management

Businesses which will survive these challenging times will be the ones who will make their decisions based on sound financial and risk management fundamentals.

Every business will need to revamp the skills of their employees and have them brush up on their capabilities to escalate the level of profitability and enable the growth of the businesses again.

Hence, risk managers are highly in demand as they play a critical role in protecting the well-being of the organisation, and by extension, its people.

Additionally, an individual can efficiently bring out these skills if he/she is physically fit. It is suggested that even the moderate levels of exercise can empower people with a calm and composed mindset as well as the will to take tough decisions during the times of crisis. A healthy diet and regular exercise helps maintain stress-free emotional lives, which in turn will reinforce the mental health and well-being.

Interpersonal skills through effective digital communication 

It's not a secret that clear and effective communication is the most pressing or important skill while working as a professional.

However, the pandemic has brought a new dimension to the scenario as in the current situation one needs to possess the capacity to communicate effectively via video conferencing or live chats with the help of different online digital platforms. This shift to the technical platform has initiated a positive change in the interpersonal skills of many people.

For an instance, several fitness platforms have organised online fitness programs for all the age groups and all over India. Moreover, they are providing an open opportunity for the athletes and Olympic players to teach as they possess vast knowledge about fitness acquired over years of training and competing. They are keeping the initiative completely online to adhere to the idea of reskilling.

Health and fitness at workplace

Health and fitness are an important part of life that can positively affect your career success. Employers and HR teams are encouraging personal health and employee wellness programs at the workplaces for their employees to increase their productivity. Healthy employees bring an array of benefits to the businesses they work for.

Regular exercise keeps employees more energetic, motivated and happy when they are at work. 


There is an urgent need for everyone to adapt to new skills to deal with the changes and seize the opportunities to survive this period of crisis. Moreover, notwithstanding the initial fears that people faced, this new way of working could be a blueprint for the long term. 

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)