I, like almost all small business owners, have never experienced anything like the past few weeks as we weather through the first wave of the new COVID-19 virus reality. It has put an unprecedented strain on all of us.
In many ways, we must count our blessings at Pretzel Pete. As a food manufacturer, our business is considered “essential” and is not subject to the mandated shutdowns crippling other industries. Also, we are in the midst of producing some very large orders for some good customers with the promise that we have plenty of work on our hands for the foreseeable future; so, we are indeed luckier than most.
With that said, the strain on the company is palpable. Will our vendors continue to be able to supply us? Will the government restrictions ultimately be extended to even food manufacturers? Will our customers be impacted to an extent that they will struggle to pay us? All legitimate concerns.
On a personal level, all of us are worried about our personal health and those of our loved ones. Happily, none of our employees or any of their family members have contracted the virus to-date. Lucky so far!
The one guiding principal we have been preaching during these difficult times is “keep the eye on the ball” and control what we can control. As a food manufacturer that takes food safety quite seriously, we already wash our hands many, many times each day and also wear protective gloves and gear. So, at least we do not have to teach new habits! Additionally, we have instituted a policy where each employee has their temperature checked as soon as they enter the building. So far, no fevers! Through these measures and by concentrating on our daily business, I am hopeful that we will weather this storm and come out OK.
One last note is to express my sincere appreciation and gratitude to our employees. They have taken this situation seriously and are still doing great work every hour of every day. Their ability to maintain their composure and professionalism – all the while maintaining a good attitude – has been a wonder to behold.
I hope everyone stays safe!!