Despite the great challenge represented by the COVID-19, we must assume the positive aspects of the new normality

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Edu is an HVAC and security systems installer.

Malaga, Spain – July, 2020

A couple of years ago we established a security systems distribution company and sooner than we knew we ended up having bunch of customers. One of the key areas that we focused on was holiday rentals: locks, security systems… And one of the most important demands of this sector is the control and management of air conditioning for comfort, energy efficiency and savings. This is how we got into the world of air conditioning.

As a self-employed HVAC installer Edu visits his clients regularly.

It was a natural consequence. I studied the market and tried to respond to the needs we identified, always within the margins of our expertise, in this case, system management, and control.

I really like what I do, I am happy with my job, so much that every time I finish a project I feel sad; I sometimes wish I could continue maintaining the project without ever reaching the end result because the relations developed along the way are so meaningful.

The streets look empty as Edu approaches his destination.

With the COVID-19 I think there has been a change in people’s perspective. Efficiency and safety in business matters now more than ever. Our customers need to automate systems, they need everything “contactless”, with the least possible contact. That means having the maximum number of services possible integrated into the current universal key: your smartphone, which only you get to touch.

Edu is ringing his client's doorbell.

On a more professional level, I was scared at first. The year couldn’t have started better: we had many projects on the table and all of a sudden, we are confined. It has been a halt. It has really affected us. I am self-employed and I make a living by being out in the streets, working daily. When you meet a client in person there is likely to be a deal and you can close a project in just a few months. In this situation, we sadly haven’t had those meetings that lead to sales. For us it is a little more complicated. We are not back to the normality 100%.

Edu is adapting to the new normality.

On a personal level I have special circumstances because my daughter lives with her mother in another province and four months without seeing her has been very hard. I also had to keep on working and going out to the streets, without knowing how all this was going to turn out. I was very afraid for my family, my wife’s parents often took care of our son, and I feared infecting these elderly people.

The return to normality is complicated. Our generation has not been through anything this serious; our parents or grandparents lived through wars and scarcity, we have not. We are a generation of immortal beings living in the digital age, where everything is easy, and now we are faced with real problems difficult to deal with. Normality is still far in the distance; we are adapting to a new situation. I consider myself lucky because I can still work.

Edu inspect the air conditioning ducts.

I have been fortunate as I work in services. Covid-19 has brought a lot more attention to what we offer: security, control, and systems management. The priorities have changed. Companies are investing more in digitalization focused on centralized management and control, so that everything can be managed remotely. But for a lot of other businesses the recovery will be difficult. I hate to say this but a lot of them are going to go down.

It is a pity but during the confinement, I realized that the world needed to stop, the speed and rhythm we were carrying were not letting us see what was important. Believe it or not, I needed this. I had to stop. I believe that all those who know how to stop, analyze, and evolve these days will come out of this mess a little stronger.

As for me, I have been learning how to better organize myself, how to prioritize, and above all Covid-19 has helped me to keep what I really needed, to let go of that quarried stone we carry every day and of which we are hardly aware; to relieve unnecessary burdens. It has been a very intense and difficult four months as I have not stopped working but I also learnt a lot.

I think I am at my peak. There are a lot of projects in the pipeline and I’m very excited. My work involves many risks because sometimes, after dedicating yourself to a project, it just doesn’t work out. Nevertheless, I don’t know what has happened during this confinement, but I am not scared anymore. If I must dedicate myself to a project that finally doesn’t take place, no problem, I know that another opportunity is going to come up.

I learnt the true value of my family. Yesterday my daughter left after staying with me for 15 days and I think they were the most special days we have had in a very long time. Being altogether again with my daughter, my son and my wife was priceless.

This has been a great learning process and here is what I will say, if I have managed to get positive things out of all this, aimed at being better, I am sure there are many other people like me. I feel like in the end humanity still has hope.