NEWS

21 December 2021

Tags: Editorial

How the pandemic changed us in more ways than one

COVID-19 has changed our perspectives in many ways, some more overt than others. 

For almost two years, we have been mostly living within four walls. Now that vaccinations have put the pandemic somewhat under control, we are able to emerge from this claustrophobic existence with changed views, new perceptions, and different approaches to life. 

Here are five selected takes on how the pandemic has changed us.

We learned to be more patient and respectful of others

Enhanced and near obsessive installation of order and structure when going outdoors during COVID-19 has impacted lives in many ways – teaching patience, organisation and etiquette.

We adopted the new rules of social distancing as well as the importance of maintaining it, even though it caused inconvenience. We also became more accommodating towards each other with regards to working or teaching. Online classes and working from home taught us to be more lenient with our coworkers, teachers and students, some of whom may take time to adjust to the new lifestyle. Employers also adopted flexible working schedules to accommodate staff who need to juggle work and running a household.

In short, the pandemic instigated a feeling of ‘waiting’ for life to return to normalcy. Due to living under a lockdown, we grew to better understand ourselves and our triggers around impatience. This introspective learning has led to better social organisation and a new respect for social etiquette, which was previously ignored or taken for granted.

We learned to appreciate the common good

Being in lockdown around the world has brought to light what we value and prioritise in our communities and relationships.

There have been more structured cooperation processes all around. Large international teams assembled quickly, resulting in rapid evaluation of therapies and drugs to treat COVID-19. Governments and businesses came together to develop social distancing strategies and better designs for working spaces. 

On a personal level, we learned that working from home did not necessarily diminish productivity, but instead brought about new challenges as workers tried to separate their working and personal lives. 

Time management became even more important as there was no distinction between the working space and the home, resulting in longer working hours and even strains on personal relationships. Many couples were put to the test with time spent living and working together. For some, it has been a blessing, for others, it was  a brutal awakening to the lack of understanding of one another in relationships.

Overall however, the new lockdown-induced lifestyle encouraged us to view our families and communities in a different light as people were forced to come closer in new ways.

We developed a greater sense of fear and caution towards illnesses

www.bbc.comfuturearticle20200904-covid-19-how-to-travel-safely-on-the-bus-train-and-subway (1)

Fear and anxiety reports in the news were common during the early lockdown period, as governments imposed movement controls and declared emergencies, while media reported high numbers of infections. 

As a result of this heightened information overload surrounding the pandemic, we grew distrustful of others by showing signs of paranoia and anxiety towards COVID-19 symptoms in public such as coughing, and thinking too much about what others think of ourselves. This new sense of judgement also extended into personal relationships, with more people becoming less extroverted. Some might say it has even turbo charged the Michelangelo effect in relationships.

We became better at discerning and discounting fabrication

On a positive note, the pandemic caused people to assess their trustable sources as tolerance for anything conspicuous decreased and the need for authenticity rose, with more and more people actively calling out fake news on social media platforms.

How people view brands and the various brand commitments have also changed. We no longer accepted exaggerated brand promises at face value anymore – now that our quest for real news has given us the appetite to dig deeper. Brands can no longer make bold promises and benefit from the hype around popular initiatives. Instead, consumers are now following brands that are action-oriented and who firmly stand for the values they hold even if these values cost them customers or sales.

We changed our relationship with space

Extended isolation during the pandemic resulted in a major impact on how people and organisations see space, from wanting more space to adding biophilic designs into their homes and offices.

Homes designed during the pandemic became more suited for a hybrid lifestyle, incorporating practical elements influenced by the blurring of the lines between private life and business. As a response to the increased concern on personal hygiene, sensors such as AWAIR sensors have become more popular in homes and offices to give people the sense of ease  knowing that the air is clean.

Out on the streets, a behavioural shift has taken place due to the enforcing of social distancing and the amount of time spent indoors. City planners across North America have adopted biophilic designs to create a safe space for users. From incorporating plant life into the layouts, to clever use of natural lighting, biophilic design intends to improve health and productivity in the new normal.

 

Conclusion

Everything we were used to – from shopping instincts, habits, mental availability of brands, products and categories – faces a reset as we begin to return to our workplaces, go back to malls, and participate in social, on-ground events after a long hiatus.

Brands will need to transform their usual marketing practises to take into account the five trends above and adapt their marketing experiences to suit their changed audience.

 

About this series: Lion Experts’ Bytes is a series where Lion & Lion experts share tips and insights on different aspects of the ever-evolving marketing landscape, from social media, creative, strategy to digital marketing. 

Need assistance engaging your audience? We can help you there.

 

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Privacy Policy

INTRODUCTION
Lion & Lion needs to gather and use certain information about individuals.

These can include customers, suppliers, business contacts, employees and other people the organisation has a relationship with or may need to contact.

This policy describes how personal data must be collected, handled and stored to meet the company’s data protection standards — and to comply with the laws.

Lion & Lion may change, revise and/or amend this policy from time to time in accordance with the relevant laws. The updated version of such changes will be effective starting from the date that it is published.

WHY THIS POLICY EXISTS
This data protection policy ensures Lion & Lion:

• Complies with data protection laws and follows good practice
• Protects the rights of staff, customers and partners
• Is open about how it stores and processes individuals’ data
• Protects itself from the risks of a data breach

DATA PROTECTION LAW
Data Protection Law, in general, governs how organisations, including Lion & Lion, must collect, handle and store personal information.

Data Protection Law applies regardless of whether data is stored electronically, on paper or on other materials. To comply with the law, personal information must be collected and used fairly, stored safely and not disclosed unlawfully.

Each of the entities under the Lion & Lion Group adheres to its local data protection law (if any); namely;
• Malaysia – Personal Data Protection Act 2010 (PDPA)
• HK – Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance (Cap. 486)
• Singapore – Personal Data Protection Act 2012 (No. 26 of 2012)
• Vietnam – Law on Cyber-Information Security (LCIS)
• Taiwan – Personal Data Protection Law (‘PDPL’)

In addition, Lion & Lion Group will also adhere to the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) when applicable (ie. when personal data is processed for activities and transactions occur within the European Union).

The General Data Protection Regulations are underpinned by six important principles. These say that personal data must:
• Be processed fairly and lawfully and in a transparent manner in relation to individuals;
• Be collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes and not further processed in a manner that is incompatible with those purposes;
• Be adequate, relevant and not excessive
• Be accurate and kept up to date
• Not be held for any longer than necessary
• Be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects and in a manner ensuring appropriate security of the personal data

PEOPLE, RISKS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

POLICY SCOPE
This policy applies to:
• All staff of Lion & Lion
• All authorised agents, contractors, suppliers, third party service providers and other people working on behalf of Lion & Lion where they are required to use personal data collected by Lion & Lion (including but not limited to its external professional advisors and auditors)
• Any related and affiliated companies of Lion & Lion (including Lion & Lion’s intermediate owners and ultimate beneficial owner)

It applies to all data that the company holds relating to identifiable individuals. This can include:
• Names of individuals
• Postal addresses
• Email addresses
• Telephone numbers
• Any other information relating to individuals and relevant to customer surveys and/or offers
• IP addresses and cookie strings
• Sensitive data (if any)

DATA PROTECTION RISKS
This policy helps to protect Lion & Lion from some data security risks, including:
• Breaches of confidentiality. For instance, information being given out inappropriately.
• Failing to offer choice. For instance, all individuals should be free to choose how the company uses data relating to them.
• Reputational damage. For instance, the company could suffer if hackers successfully gained access to sensitive data.
• Lion & Lion will also conduct a Risk Management Plan to assess risk and mitigate harm to the data that is collected and stored. This Risk Management Plan, created by the Project Manager of any project, defines how risks associated with any project will be identified, analyzed and managed and such plan will outline how risk management activities will be performed, recorded and monitored throughout the lifecycle of the project.

RESPONSIBILITIES
Everyone who works for or with Lion & Lion has some responsibility for ensuring data is collected, stored and handled appropriately.
Each team that handles personal data must ensure that it is handled and processed in line with this policy and data protection principles.

However, these people have key areas of responsibility:
• Lion & Lion’s Board of Directors are ultimately responsible for ensuring that Lion & Lion meets its legal obligations.

• The Data Protection Officer is responsible for:
- Keeping management updated about data protection responsibilities, risks and issues.
- Reviewing all data protection procedures and related policies, in line with an agreed schedule.
- Arranging data protection training and advice for the people covered by this policy.
- Handling data protection questions from staff and anyone else covered by this policy.
- Dealing with requests from individuals to see the data Lion & Lion holds about them (also called ‘subject access requests’).
- Checking and approving any contracts or agreements with third parties that may handle the company’s sensitive data.

• The Head of Operations and appointed IT Manager is responsible for:
- Ensuring all systems, services and equipment used for storing data meet acceptable security standards.
- Performing regular checks and scans to ensure security hardware and software is functioning properly.
- Evaluating any third-party services the company is considering using to store or process data. For instance, cloud computing services.

• The marketing execution teams are responsible for:
- Approving any data protection statements attached to communications such as emails and letters.
- Where necessary, working with other staff to ensure marketing initiatives abide by data protection principles.

DATA USE AND COLLECTION
Personal data is of no value to Lion & Lion unless the business can make use of it. However, it is when personal data is accessed and used that it can be at the greatest risk of loss, corruption or theft. The following guidelines will govern how Lion & Lion collects and uses personal data:

• Personal data will only be used for the purposes for which they were collected.
• The purposes for which personal data are being collected will be explained to individuals. These purposes may include the following; Contractual Necessity and Compliance with Legal Obligations
• Consent should always be obtained from the individual to use this personal data for a secondary purpose.
• Individuals will be provided with the opportunity to decline to provide personal data and the consequences of refusing to provide personal data will be clearly explained to individuals.
• A visible and easy to use mechanism will always be provided to individuals to withdraw their consent for processing their personal data.
• When working with personal data, employees should ensure the screens of their computers are always locked when left unattended.
• Personal data should not be shared informally. Data must be encrypted before being transferred
• All data stores and laptops that hold or process personal data will be equipped with encryption software.
• Personal data processed within the EU (if any) should never be transferred to a country or territory outside of the European Economic Area unless the country or territory ensures adequate level of security and unless there is a written consent.
• Employees should not save copies of personal data to their own computers. Always access and update the central copy of any data.
• Privacy / data protection compliance should always be taken into consideration in the:
- design of new and/or redevelopment of existing systems or business processes.
- specification, procurement and testing of new items of hardware used to support business processes
- specification, design and testing of new items of software used to support business processes.

DATA STORAGE
These rules describe how and where data should be safely stored. When data is stored on paper, it should be kept in a secure place where unauthorised people cannot see it.

These guidelines also apply to data that is usually stored electronically but has been printed out for some reason:

• When not required, the paper or files should be kept in a locked drawer or filing cabinet.
• Employees should make sure paper and printouts are not left where unauthorised people could see them, like on a printer.
• Data printouts should be shredded and disposed of securely when no longer required.

When data is stored electronically, it must be protected from unauthorised access, accidental deletion and malicious hacking attempts:
• Data should be protected by strong passwords that are changed regularly and never shared between employees.
• If data is stored on removable media (like a CD or DVD), these should be kept locked away securely when not being used.
• Data should only be stored on designated drives and servers, and should only be uploaded to an approved cloud computing services.
• Servers containing personal data should be sited in a secure location, away from general office space.
• Data should be backed up frequently. Those backups should be tested regularly, in line with the company’s standard backup procedures.
• Data should never be saved directly to laptops or other mobile devices like tablets or smartphones.
• All servers and computers containing data should be protected by approved security software and a firewall.

Personal data will only be retained for as long as necessary for the purpose(s) for which they were collected. The following controls in place to ensure that personal data are destroyed of or transferred back to another party in a manner that prevents improper access:

Data deletion or transfer requests should be made by email, addressed to the data controller at gdpr@lionandlion.com. The data controller will supply a standard request form and will aim to address the request within 14 days.
The data controller will always verify the identity of anyone making a request before handing over any information.

DATA ACCURACY
The applicable laws require Lion & Lion to take reasonable steps to ensure data is kept accurate and up to date.

The more important it is that the personal data is accurate, the greater the effort Lion & Lion should put into ensuring its accuracy.

It is the responsibility of all employees who work with data to take reasonable steps to ensure it is kept as accurate and up to date as possible.
• Data will be held in as few places as necessary. Staff should not create any unnecessary additional data sets.
• Staff should take every opportunity to ensure data is updated. For instance, by confirming a customer’s details when they call.
• Data should be updated as inaccuracies are discovered. For instance, if a customer can no longer be reached on their stored telephone number, it should be removed from the database.
• It is the marketing manager’s responsibility to ensure marketing databases are checked against industry suppression files every six months and to record the status after each check.

SUBJECT ACCESS REQUESTS
All individuals who are the subject of personal data held by Lion & Lion are entitled to:
• Ask what information the company holds about them and why.
• Ask how to gain access to it, request for transfer, updates or amendments of data
• Be informed how to keep it up to date.
• Be informed how the company is meeting its data protection obligations.
• Raise complaints or report any breach of data protection law
• Request for erasure of data

Subject access requests from individuals should be made by email, addressed to the data controller at gdpr@lionandlion.com. The data controller will supply a standard request form and will aim to provide the relevant data within 14 days.

The Data Protection Officer will always verify the identity of anyone making a subject access request before handing over any information.

All requests (including but not limited to data breach notification and complaints) shall be free of charge and will be recorded in the Company’s system.

DATA BREACH, COMPLAINTS AND INQUIRIES
Detailed information and guidance on data breach, complaints and inquiries procedures, can be found here.

DISCLOSING DATA FOR OTHER REASONS
In certain circumstances, Personal Data may be required to be disclosed to law enforcement agencies or authorities without the consent of the data subject.
Under these circumstances, Lion & Lion will disclose the requested data. However, Lion & Lion will ensure the request is legitimate, seeking assistance from the company’s legal advisers where necessary.

PRIVACY CONTROL MANAGEMENT
The Data Protection Officer will conduct annual Privacy/ Data Protection Compliance Audits at a designated time between the month of July and August. Staff of Lion & Lion are required take the annual privacy and data protection training with an assessment to acknowledge the policy.

GENERAL STAFF GUIDELINES
• The only people able to access data covered by this policy should be those who need it for their work.
• Data should not be shared informally. When access to confidential information is required, employees can request it from their line managers.
• Lion & Lion will provide training to all employees to help them understand their responsibilities when handling data.
• Employees should keep all data secure, by taking sensible precautions and following the guidelines below.
• In particular, strong passwords must be used and they should never be shared.
• Personal data should not be disclosed to unauthorised people, either within the company or externally.
• Data should be regularly reviewed and updated if it is found to be out of date. If no longer required, it should be deleted and disposed of.
• Employees should request help from their line manager or the data protection officer if they are unsure about any aspect of data protection.