By Mark Buckshon
As we approach the Christmas holiday season, I’m taking a bit of time to reflect on how COVID-19 has upended our lives in the past two years, even as we found ways to continue our businesses and in many cases prosper.
I’m writing this viewpoint in a Toronto hotel room as we prepare for the annual Buildings Show, which I’ve attended every year since the before the Millennium – except for 2020, when the live event was cancelled because of COVID-19 event and travel restrictions.
This year, the show has returned, but on a much smaller scale. Organizers considered that the traditional massive Toronto Construction Association (TCA) Christmas lunch and a major breakfast event were too large to conduct safely, so they were cancelled. The show is confined to the South Building, when previously it occupied the entire Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
Still, I’ll be happy to return to the show and meet editor Robin MacLennan for the first time.
She joined the company in January, 2020, just before I left for an eight week overseas vacation. I returned home on March 5, just a week before the COVID-19 shutdown commenced. So our communications have been entirely virtual.
That is where I count our blessings. We had been set up for home/remote office operations long before the pandemic, so it was business mostly as usual. But the occasions when we could do in-person connecting, including the Buildings Show, were not possible until now.
I’m sure if you are reading this that your own business has made it through the pandemic in reasonably healthy shape, though undeniably there are ongoing challenges with labour shortages, materials supply and inflation.
However, we’re resilient and I’m confident we’ll thrive despite the current challenges.
Best wishes for the Holiday Season. Hopefully, by the time we get to 2023, the pandemic will be fading into memory, and we’ll be able to fully resume our annual traditions.
Mark Buckshon is president of the Construction News and Report Group of Companies, which publishes Ottawa Construction News. He can be reached by email at email@example.com.