Brett Kolomyjec, Oklahoma entrepreneur and CEO of Happily, is upbeat about postpandemic opportunities for businesses in these industries.
“I’m reading ‘The Future is Faster Than You Think,’” Kolomyjec said. “The book talks about how a convergence of events, resources and discovery can take technology that started off slow and make it accessible to the rest of the world. That feels like the shift with COVID.”
Kolomyjec is living the experience. With social distancing and limits on entertainment and dining out (not to mention, a mention in Forbes), Happily’s date-in-a-box subscription service is booming. “The pandemic has been the perfect storm for Happily,” Kolomyjec said.
The question technologists need to ask, he says, is how have the parameters and confines of our time changed with this pandemic and what technologies and services exist or can pivot to serve those needs.
“Amazon knew that the last mile is the way to reach customers,” he said, “but before COVID, that accessibility didn’t make sense for smaller companies. Now with COVID, last mile delivery is the way life is. I heard a keynote speaker say a few years ago that technology really sticks, not because of the specific service, but because it gives people back time or the perception of time. That’s happening now.”
For example, the work-from-home phenomenon is having an enormous impact on IT businesses — from the proliferation of online conferencing applications like Zoom to telecommuting.
“The last few months have made us all realize how much money, effort, and time are spent on things, not essential to our businesses,” Kolomyjec said. “I would expect that as office and commercial real estate leases expire, companies in technology are going to become very smart about remote work and how they decentralize operations. Technology and product design can be done from anywhere.”
Not only will the industry change where it works, but how it works.