(Time to read this Blog article is about 90 seconds)

Greetings fellow ‘quarantiners’.  Hope you’re safe and well.  You’re probably inundated with emails these days, so I’ll keep this short.  I have only two questions for you:

Question #1:   As a person and as a business, what are you doing to be helpful, kind and uplifting to family, neighbours, strangers, employees and customers?  Kindness matters and ‘JOY’ is contagious!  We can all do something.

Toronto’s Little India restaurant is doing something.  All restaurants in Toronto are closed, except for take-out or delivery.  Little India, a family-owned neighbourhood restaurant for over 25 years, has a different take on ‘take-out’. They’ve turned ‘take-out’ into ‘give back’.  Anyone who needs a meal can simply walk in and say, “I need a meal” and they’re given a free take-out meal…no questions asked.

A friend of ours, who’s a passionate home sewer, is doing something.  She has committed to produce 1,000 face masks each week for Toronto hospitals.

Tim Boyle, the CEO and major shareholder of Columbia Sportswear is doing something.  He has reduced his $3.3 million-dollar annual salary to just $10,000 in order to help their regular employees’ receive their paychecks during this crisis.  Tim states, “It’s just who we are.  It’s our culture!”  Several other CEOs and top managers are taking similar action.

Laura, a ladies fashion retail chain, is doing something.  They just sent my wife an email with the subject line, ‘How are you doing?  We’re thinking of you! ️’   They’re not flogging stuff…but they are relationship building.  Who are you thinking about…and how will you communicate with and uplift them?

Question #2:  How are you using your time…right now.  The 1st thing is to be aware of and apply for all the Government aid that’s being made available.  The next thing is to help your laid off or quarantined employees be aware of and apply for all of the aid that’s available to them.  The 3rd thing to do, right now, is to contact all creditors and suppliers for a frank and friendly conversation about your current situation and the kind of help and cooperation you need to emerge successfully from this.    

Then, how can you turn this ‘down time’ into ‘gearing up time’?   What can you update, create or learn now to be more extraordinary when this mess is all over? 

  • Are there expenses or facilities that can reduced for the short term…or permanently?
  • Are there efficiency improvements that didn’t seem necessary when times were good that are looking pretty important now?
  • Are there systems, processes or policies that need rethinking? 
  • Are there products or services that need to be re-costed or re-priced?  
  • Does your ‘on-boarding’ program for new employees need a complete rethink or update?
  • What do you or the business need to get better at?
  • And what are you learning from this crisis to be better prepared for the next crisis?  The media is calling this a ‘once-in-a-lifetime event’ but they’re wrong.  There will always be a ‘next crisis’.

To help you be stronger on the other side of this mess, Click Here to download my Biz Tool #B-4…‘Your 1st job is Clarity’.  There’s no charge.  I made this available a while back…but I’ve updated it since.

Before I go, a couple of quick observations about what’s ‘essential’:  

  1. If you love irony, as I do, you’re probably semi-amused by the fact that all churches are currently closed…but all liquor stores are still open. It sure raises an interesting question about our society and what is an ‘essential service’.
  2. A convenience store in Toronto reports that sales of Lottery Tickets have doubled in the past two weeks and people are crowding around the Lottery terminals to buy their tickets. This raises two questions.  First, aren’t we supposed to be staying home except to buy ‘essential items’ and then to stay 6 feet apart when we’re out?   And second, shouldn’t we be conserving our cash to get us through this crisis of unknown duration?  My Father used to comment that, “Lotteries are a voluntary tax on stupidity!”      


Stay calm, stay safe…stay well and remember, ‘JOY’ is contagious too!        

Donald Cooper 


For info about booking Donald to deliver his bottom-line insights on management, marketing and profitability at an Industry Conference or Corporate Event…or to discus our Business Coaching program, contact us at donald@donaldcooper.com or by phone at 1 (416) 252-3703 in Toronto, Canada.

One Response to Thoughts on ‘creative kindness’ and using your ‘down time’ wisely:
  1. I for one, am going to open up my business lines and help those that are not internet savvy apply for the help they need from the government. I might as well put my phone and computer to use for the community.


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