Bird Flu Epidemic and Learning

The Bird Flu epidemic is coming. Perhaps. If it does come, and if it’s as bad as they say it might be, our lives, our families, our jobs, and our learning will all be disrupted. Here’s some of the headlines:

  • The Red Cross says to stock 2 weeks of food.
  • Schools will be shut down for up to 3 months.
  • Employees will stay home from work.
  • Some businesses may lay off their workforces.
  • The food supply might be cutoff temporarily.
  • Medical institutions may be overwhelmed.

NPR had a great radio segment on this. Check it out here.

The implications for business are almost incomprehensible. From world economic collapse, to laying off the workforce, to protecting employees, to enabling work from home, to utilizing training and development to limit the repercussions.

Training-Learning-and-Development could be vital in at least two ways: First, it could help mobilize and educate workers. Second, it could ramp up to provide extra learning services during the crisis. If workers can’t work, they can learn. Certainly, businesses will want the workers to work, but if they can’t, perhaps this is an opportunity for strategic, revolutionary organizational change. A time for reflection, learning, bonding, and helping others.

To learn more about the flu, you can check out Elliott Masie’s compilation of sources.