Leader Letters are monthly letters from the Maintex Leadership team. This month, Maintex President Linda Silverman discusses how Maintex is adapting to COVID-19.
The world has changed drastically over the past few months. Each of us has been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak in different ways. Whether it is the closing of a business, a layoff or furlough, illness or personal tragedy, working in a hazardous front line situation, or the psychological effects of isolation, we are all being forced to live in new, and often difficult circumstances. When big changes happen in the world, they demand that we - and our companies - adapt and evolve to suit the new situation if we are going to survive.
Whether a company is failing or succeeding during these difficult times has a lot to do with the industry it serves and how it serves its customers. To some extent, that may be out of our hands. But for a company like Maintex, which is deemed “essential,” we have many choices to make about how we approach this disruption.
Changes at Maintex
The way companies respond to this crisis will have a major impact on both our businesses and the health of those we serve. We need to be flexible so we can adapt our practices to the situation at hand. We need to be resilient, we need to reimagine, and most importantly, we need to be willing to rise to new challenges. Maintex is actively making many changes to protect our employees and serve our customers as best as we can despite higher-than-usual demand and finite resources.
To keep our employees healthy, we have a slew of new practices and policies. Although we have rarely had remote employees in the past, we now have tools to support working from home, including frequent virtual meetings and trainings. In the office, we are diligently performing daily health screenings and temperature checks, spacing out employees and breaks to support physical distancing, and wearing masks. We are also maintaining hygiene with frequent hand washing, sanitizing, and disinfecting of all work spaces. I believe these changes have made our workplace better and safer and I expect many of these strategies to continue into the future as a new standard across all work environments.
Maintex has streamlined our chemical production to focus on those items that are most in demand by our customers. We have added personnel and invested in additional filling and labeling lines. We have also launched a new Peroxide RTU Disinfectant, which is fast, safe, and engineered for maximum results. Many chemical ingredients are in short supply today or on strict allocations, but we are carefully considering how to maximize these resources to help as many people as possible.
Our sourcing team is working non-stop to acquire in-demand items like gloves, hand sanitizer, and face masks. We are also seeking unique items that can help our clients continue to operate more safely or prepare to reopen. For example, we are now offering social distancing floor mats so businesses can indicate safe spaces for customers and employees to stand. We also have new chemical spray application units for superior disinfecting. We have closed our retail sales and set up no-contact will call orders to accommodate small orders for our local customers.
Sales and Service
When all this started there were more questions than answers. As science and government guidance has evolved, recommendations are becoming more concrete. As an essential business open throughout the pandemic, we have had to learn, adapt, and grow. We are excited to share those learnings with customers.
As businesses reopen, cleaning programs must be overhauled to meet new standards. We stand ready to assist customers with site audits, updated cleaning plans, and recommendations for the right supplies and equipment to maximize health and safety.
The Clean Up
Resilience demands that we maintain flexibility and learn to pivot when necessary. Sticking to outdated business practices could have massive negative impacts on our customers, our employees, and our bottom line. But those of us who are nimble and creative and search for new solutions will be able to serve better and emerge stronger.
I take great pride in knowing that the cleaning industry provides necessary products and solutions to keep the public safe and healthy. For many years the cleaning industry was considered a necessary budget line expense. After what we have all been through in the recent weeks and months, I believe everyone will more clearly see the value and importance of clean.