The events that have unfolded in the past week have placed us in uncharted waters.These are, without a doubt,unsettling times. Many dealers have never experienced events that are in front of us today. Few have the first-hand experience of previous, economic downturns, which makes the strategic community of SEN a more valuable resource for all of us to leverage for assistance and to lean on in order to navigate these uncertain times.
To that end, SEN will be issuing Business Advisories to identify and provide strategies you can refer to and put into practice as well as tools you can access to survive, and perhaps even thrive, in these turbulent times.
A competitor reached out to a SEN member this week and inquired how they were handling the crisis; what policies had they put in place, and what procedures they instituted to keep their staff and community safe. This competitor shared that employees were concerned, anxious, and scared about the unknown. Concerned about their safety and health, worried about contracting an extremely contagious virus and making the situation worst for them and their families.
Perhaps you’re in a similar state of mind. You are feeling powerless or helpless and uncertain about what to do in light of this situation. Today is not the time to bury your head in the sand, hoping tomorrow will be better. Actionable leadership is required today.
Consider implementing the following:
- Assemble your team and involve them in developing an action plan.
- Allow as many employees as possible to work from home, providing them the tools and resources to still be productive.
- Restrict showroom hours to “by appointment only.”
- And, stagger showroom meetings to only one session at a time.
- Implement a no-hand shaking policy for your team and all prospects and clients.
- Train your team on proper hand washing techniques. Don’t assume that everyone knows how to wash correctly.
- Anyone who exhibits any signs of illness should be sent home immediately.
- Post safety guidelines in the showroom, office areas, bathrooms, and working kitchen areas. Wipe down all horizontal and vertical surfaces in your showroom and offices with disinfected wipes—daily.
- Leverage technology. Open a Zoom, Google hangout, or Facebook Live account. Consider using those tools for client meetings instead of meetings in the showroom.
- Market on social media how your firm is responding to this pandemic. Discuss with and train all trades and sub-contractors on safe practices.
Maintain a positive outlook. Your team closely watches your actions and behaviors. The wrong body language or attitude can stop you dead in your tracks. This is not the remedy to get you through this.
How you show up and lead will go a long way to help your team, and your company, survives these dark times. It’s time to circle the wagons and involve everyone on the side to pitch in and help. And I’m confident that ultimately, your company will be more reliable because of the proactive steps you’ve taken.