Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates believes that the ways in which people conduct businesses and business travel will drastically change even in the post COVID world. While interacting with Andrew Ross Sorkin at the Dealbook Conference hosted by the New York Times, Gates stated that 50 per cent of business travel and 30 per cent of days in office shall wither away in the post pandemic world.
The form of business travel where it's important to fly to a particular location to physically sit in front of someone else to discuss an issue in person will not be the "gold standard" in the times following the pandemic, the American business magnate said. Since remote working is a much more feasible option when compared to working in-office, Gates said there will be a "very high threshold" for conducting business trips now.
In the "Bill Gates and Rashida Jones Ask Questions" podcast, he said that his work schedule has become simpler since coronavirus, comprising fewer days of travel for work.
Some companies are, however, likely to adopt more extreme measures to reduce in-person meetings than others, he added.
Gates did, however, talk about one side-effect of online meetings-not being able to meet new people. He said that he has not been able to make any new friends in 2020 since he never meets people at random.
Employees won't hit the road anytime soon with work from home emerging as the safer alternative. According to a survey conducted by the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), 50 per cent of the total 2,267 participants said they would think about returning to travelling for work purposes but were not sure when. Meanwhile, 18 per cent did not have any plans to resume travel for now while 19 per cent were not sure.