It’s easy to forget that a lot of good is happening in the world. With the constant news updates and Boris Johnson’s daily press release, this virus looks quite scary. It’s not just the chesty coughs, fevers and risks to our health that is frightening. The economy has taken a huge hit with some industries facing a three-month closure.
Whilst the government enforces a lock-in, banning mass gatherings and pleading for people to stay in their homes, hundreds of businesses have closed their doors. People are working from home or finding themselves with nothing to do for the foreseeable future. Taking each day as it comes is our only option while we tackle this pandemic. Unfortunately, this could be the end for hundreds of SME’s globally.
But these aren’t dyer times. Individuals are coming together. Businesses are switching strategies and offering what they can to those in need. The NHS have called for a volunteer army, with 170,000 people already signing up to help. Royal Mail are delivering vital health and wellbeing products, signing your deliveries for you so there is no need for contact. Deliveroo are doing home deliveries of groceries. And supermarkets have dedicated time to the elderly and NHS workers who would else be forgotten in the panic-buying frenzy.
Some independent, smaller businesses are also doing their bit to fight against Coronavirus. Offering staff as volunteers. And opening their doors so that other industries have a fighting chance. These four companies are showing initiative, doing what they can to save lives and improve this situation for everyone.
Venues across the globe have closed their doors at government instruction, losing hundreds of pounds worth of business. But they aren’t dwelling on the negatives.
Many have donated food or offered staff as volunteers. ExCel London is set to be used as an emergency hospital, to treat COVID-19 patients, in a matter of days. The Ministry of Defence and NHS employees have begun work converting the 100,000 sq m space into a hospital. The venue will transform into a 5,000-bed ward, helping the UK to treat the virus and protect our population. With 80% of intensive care beds already occupied by COVID-19 patients, these extra resources will save lives.
Hand sanitizer has become the most lucrative commodity. Supermarket shelves are empty and Boots have a queue of customers out the door (2m apart of course). There is even rations in place, where shoppers are only allowed to take one or two products per purchase.
This type of demand causes a ripple effect. Suppliers cannot produce hand sanitiser quickly enough to fulfil needs. Where people have been unable to access any they have turned to extreme measures. Some people are making their own at home, however, others have disgustingly chosen to rob supplies from hospitals and other health care establishments in need.
Dorset based distillery, Conker Gin, have taken it upon themselves to produce 100 bottles of hand sanitizer using alcohol that would have otherwise been wasted. Their initiative means that care workers and struggling hospitality businesses have been able to protect themselves, their employees and their customers. Their plan is to support independent local bars, shops and delis over the coming two to three months, as they too are expecting to face troubled waters.
Quadrant2Design design, manufacture and build custom modular exhibition stands in their Poole based design studio and factory. They are also dealing with an extremely quiet season ahead, with every trade show understandably postponed until later in the year. Rather than dwell on the negative, the organisation tried to do something productive that would help businesses struggling through this tough time.
As you know, exhibitions are a great B2B marketing opportunity. Without them, SME’s would struggle to generate leads and close deals. This would seriously impact a businesses turnover if they rely heavily on exhibiting as a marketing strategy. Not ideal given the current predictions for our economy.
Quadrant2Design have allowed independent, local businesses the opportunity to host a digital event in their showroom. This could be a live-stream Q&A session or a virtual trade show. It means businesses are still given the opportunity to showcase their brand and product, but in a safe environment following strict social distancing rules and regulations. It could help SME’s, local businesses and start-ups stay afloat facing the tough times ahead.
Football matches, and other sporting events, were one of the first to be cancelled. The huge crowds that these events attract were putting peoples lives at risk. Obviously the announcement of postponed matches and cancelled games caused upset, with super fans clearly annoyed at the Premier League and English Football League’s decision.
Birmingham City FC decided to do something good. They donated all of the food on their premises to food banks and charities associated with feeding those in need. This meant that people who couldn’t afford or couldn’t access food were able to fill their cupboards ready for a complete lockdown.
Given the current state of affairs, people have been quick to forget about the struggle of losing football. However, the food that this team have donated will go a long way towards helping those in need.
These four businesses are proof that there are good things happening every day in the wake of this pandemic. By working together, and supporting each other, our industries and communities stand a fighting chance. ExCel London, Quadrant2Design, Conker Gin Distillery and Birmingham City FC are all doing what they can to fight this battle. We won’t let this bug defeat us.