Back to the Fundamentals of Human Trust with Schneider Electric
Our world is facing an unexpected ordeal. As we all grapple with how we can collectively beat COVID-19, I reflect on what has changed in our world, how our perceptions and interactions are being shaped in this new reality. This unique time in history reminds us of the true fundamentals of human life.
Trust is everything
Today’s crisis is challenging our core notion of trust. We are pushed to view each other as threat, our response to implement distance. But at the same time we have widespread trust in our society. Trust that each of us will enact the same social behavior to contain the spread of disease. Trust that we can rely on specialists for care and healing, for food, without the time nor capacity to check on their safety procedures. Trust that we can rely on organizations to fulfill the basics of life: water and energy. Trust that we will all adapt to the everchanging orders from authorities. Trust that everybody is playing their part in society, with honesty and rigor.
In our new daily life, we are required to trust more because we can no longer check and control. We share information more transparently as we are facing the same urgent challenge. We tolerate mistakes more than before and focus on solutions rather than finger pointing. We realize that this makes everybody’s task more efficient, fulfilling and satisfactory. We will probably discover that many things we were doing could be done differently or perhaps, stopped altogether. The crisis breaks the walls and builds stronger bridges; public and private engaging together, competing companies collaborating to step up manufacturing or sourcing of medical equipment.
Defiance is defeated by the immensity of the challenge we must face together. The only way out is with trust, in times which undermine it.
Everybody needs somebody
Everybody has a role
We rediscover how interconnected our society is. We assume our mission in the new conditions with the flexibility to support our community with what we have. Medical professionals on the front line, teachers educating the next generation remotely, operators of critical energy and water networks, garbage collectors and supermarket workers. We all need to try our best to keep the world running, and, except for the most vulnerable of us, everybody is needed on deck. At Schneider we have the responsibility to ensure the 24x7 service continuity of the critical industries, in all the countries and communities we operate in. In hospitals, data centers, grids, water plants, and cold chains of food and pharmaceutical. Our mission is to make sure that Life Is On, everywhere, for everyone, at every moment. And that is possible because our people keep manufacturing, our office teams keep answering, and our service teams keep responding.
Beyond our own neighborhood, we all become more conscious of interdependency. Suppliers, manufacturers, and customers open books and communicate to ensure continuity of service together. Tense relationships become much more collaborative when we all realize we need each other to keep operating.
The time of people
People reveal themselves in the crisis. I am heartened and amazed to witness the energy, creativity, commitment and determination of so many people. They propose ideas and solutions to face unexpected challenges. We see solidarity and altruism developing in many places. At Schneider, the teams worked with partners to develop ventilators, secured new workstations to ensure continuity of service, rapidly contributed to new hospitals builds and financed community relief projects. All of this being spontaneously initiated and ingeniously executed in no time locally.