How to deal with the global crisis due to Covid 19: People are our real property!

People are our real property: We support our employee, partners and community!

The situation as it is today

For more than a month, all tourism professionals around the world are experiencing an unprecedented situation, which creates anxiety and insecurity for the future. The unprecedented crisis of the Covid 19 pandemic, brings a major negative impact to the tourism industry.

Locked down in our homes, we experience a completely different reality in our country and internationally.

This situation scares people since we do not know what the next day will be or when it will come. So, we don't know how to prepare ourselves properly. We all have more or less the same feelings. But we have to remember that all people have the same feelings with us.

Let's forget for a while the next day and focus on the period we are going through now. Let's think about how we can really act positively in all this insecurity we experience.

The main way is to realize that we are not alone.

Tip number one: People are our real property: We support our employee, business partners and our community!

We support our employees

We must not forget that all these years, our employees are the ones who helped us to create and strengthen our professional product, our company and the services we offer to our customers. Therefore, in no case should we forget them during this difficult time.

We must do everything possible to help them survive at this difficult time. We need to make it easier for those who may work from home online, to have a professional presence.

We must also ensure that their rights are secured and they take the  benefits  by the state, by facilitating any necessary procedures as a company.

Finally, we need to be in regular contact with them, letting them know what we think about the future. Probably the services we are thinking of providing, when the next day comes, are more or less different from the ones we provided till yesterday. We inform our employees about our thoughts and our possible plans, and we prepare them properly for the moment when our business will start working again.

We support our business partners

In the tourism industry, our business partners are the most valuable asset we have. For a hotel, the tour operators, the companies that support us  to online bookings, the companies that provide us marketing services, the suppliers, are just some of our main business partners.

For a travel agency, the hotels with which it cooperates, the tourist guides, the companies that promote its travel programs, etc. belong to the circle of its important business partners.

All these professionals, our direct business partners, have been affected as much as we have by this new situation and they are trying to find ways out. Don't lose touch with them. Support them in any way you can. Talk to them about the cancellation policies that are currently bothering tourism professionals, talk to them about joint actions, try to convince your customers to postpone and not cancel their reservations.

We support our community

In the crisis we are experiencing, we must not  forget that we are members of a community, the one in which we live. We need to find ways to support the medical community that fights the virus in the front line, the professionals who work outside their homes and the financially weakest people.

Many companies donate to hospitals, others try to make daily life easier for people who are struggling financially, others try to help vulnerable groups of people, and so on.

Each of us, should help our neighbor in any way we can. If we all try to help as much as we can, some will certainly be helped to get through this crisis less difficultly.

Here are three reasons why you should help your employees, business partners and community

1. Your employees and co-workers will be the ones to stand by you the next day you get back to business.

The more you stand by their side during this difficult time, the more they will stand by your side when we are all be called together to bring the tourism industry back to where it was before.

2. The local community is the one through which you attract your future customers, those who tomorrow will wish to travel again and will turn to hoteliers and travel agents to make their short or big  trips. 

3. Lastly, don't forget that when the crisis incurs, people will not forget those who helped them

By helping people through this difficult time, you are essentially helping your prospective customers survive, reach the next day and re-emerge as potential buyers.

Lastly, don't forget that when the crisis incurs, people will not forget those who helped them.

Epilogue

In this series of articles that I started to write about how we can respond positively to this new world crisis, I do not wish to promote myself as an expert and a wise person. I am a simple tourism professional sharing with you my thoughts and concerns about this difficult situation we are all experiencing. I don't have the infallibility. I'm here to share my thoughts and share how I deal with the problem. I'm here to hear your own thoughts, your own concerns, your own ideas. For those who want to contact me personally, my email is respondondemand@gmail.com.  You can always send me your comments, they are all welcome.

In a few days, a new article will follow with thoughts on whether and how people will travel the next day. Stay tuned!


By Maria Athanasopoulou, founder of the tourism marketing company Respond On Demand, co-founder of the non-profit company Top Tourism, Chairwoman of the World Food Travel Association and Ambassador in Greece of Evintra



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