When the coronavirus swept through the country earlier in the year, businesses and industries were brought to a grinding halt and sent employees and workers packing for home.
The global health crisis has greatly impacted the economy in a massive, short of destructive, way. While several businesses are somehow thriving at this time due to the nature of their services and products — such as a food shop, grocery store, drug store, logistics company, and PPE manufacturer — millions have still ended up jobless. Thousands of businesses are at the brink of closing their doors permanently.
The federal government’s solution to our worsening economic crisis is to allow the states to reopen businesses to help mitigate the pandemic’s effect on the market. This decision was met with mixed reactions. Some are in favor of it to help revive our struggling economy. Naysayers, on the other hand, are fearful of the second wave of COVID-19-positive cases that could be worse than the first one.
At this point, we can only work with what we can control. Despite the threat of the virus, which is still very much real, we cannot stay locked up in our homes until a cure or a vaccine is found. We still have to put food on the table and pay the bills. Not everyone can transition their business to the digital platform, unlike most white-collar jobs.
The best course of action to take is to carefully plan and strategize how you will make the necessary adjustments to keep your business going without compromising the health of your workers and customers.
Prepare your workplace and people for the transition.
For all businesses, prioritizing the health of your customers and employees is the key to a successful reopening despite the ongoing pandemic.
Make sure that your shop is ready to adhere to the stricter COVID-19 protocols that the CDC, municipality, or state has put in place. This means that if you need to install physical barriers or rearranging the layout to encourage social distancing in your premises, then do so.
Come up with a system to monitor your employees’ wellness.
Create an employee wellness plan to ensure your employees are in the pink of health as you resume your business’ operation. Be strict with the use of PPEs. Have temperature checks at the door. Encourage transparency about physical health and hold each other accountable for it.
Put the proper safety measures in place for the handling of physical items.
Now that different states are gearing up for a reopening, this means that non-essential stores are also opening their doors to the public after a couple of months of hiatus.
Retailers should follow what restaurants have done the past few months by implementing a curbside pick-up or delivery system in keeping with health and safety guidelines. Consider changing the way you conduct your business to cashless and contactless transactions.
Make sure to communicate whatever plans and changes will take place to both employees and customers.
Communicate, communicate, communicate. Never be afraid to overcommunicate any changes in your business. Communicate clearly and frequently. Communication is crucial at this time in assuring your employees and customers that you are concerned about their concerns.
Exhaust all possible means of communication. Make the most of the digital platform and social media to spread the word. Overcommunicate if you must just as long as you communicate. The most important thing now is making sure everyone is healthy and safe as your state reopens and works its way to the closest semblance of normalcy that it can reach for now. Stay healthy and safe!