When you’re hit by something as potentially harmful as coronavirus, you need to keep calm, come up with a plan (if you haven’t got one already) and communicate that simply and clearly to your staff and customers.
As well as wanting to know you’re on top of things, people will also want to feel you’re aware of the impact on them and that you’re doing everything you can to minimise it.
An email sent out by a leading restaurant chain did just that.
It started by saying: “… the well-being of our guests, our associates and our staff is our absolute priority, and you can be assured that health and safety has our complete attention.”
So far, so good in their response to coronavirus.
It went on: “All of our employees are fully aware of the current requirements and are undertaking extreme levels of health and safety procedure to ensure that the highest possible hygiene standards are maintained, throughout every aspect of our restaurants.”
It added that all staff or staff with family members returning from “affected areas” would be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days and that it would be following developments “on a daily basis with intense scrutiny”.
The email convinced me and no doubt many others that everything was being done to make the firm’s restaurants safe places and this would continue to be the case.
I didn’t rush to book a table, but I wouldn’t hesitate to do so in the future, provided the chain continued to provide good food and service, of course.
So, congrats to the author (or authors) of the email. It was both informative and sympathetic to all concerned and achieved its objective, which was to retain my loyalty and, most importantly, my custom.
If you need help and advice about how to frame your response to coronavirus, then contact us on 020 8332 6200 or firstname.lastname@example.org.