In today’s business world, resilience has become a form of coping combined with tangible problem-solving. Resilience accepts that problems happen. Resilience is about recovering quickly from difficulties.
What we are all quickly learning is that resilience requires both out-of-the-box thinking and steadfast discipline. Motionsoft’s first phase in our resiliency plan was to address the health and safety of our employees while virtualizing Motionsoft’s business operations for our customers. Now that our entire company is working from home, I’ve been collaborating with our team to create a resilience model and process for our business that I’d like to share with you.
- Support your employees. Resumption of services will require a team. Research unemployment benefits. Facilitate flexible and remote work arrangements. If your employees have young children, here’s a great video streaming resource from Kidville. Please note that while video streaming is currently free you are required to create an account. No credit card required.
- Support your members. Right now, the fastest and simplest way to help your members shift from in-person gym visits is by providing them with links to streaming exercise videos so that your business can continue to meaningfully interact with your membership base. Motionsoft has published a link to Les Mills free streaming classes in our blog post Covid-19 Resources for Club Professionals.
- Support our industry. IHRSA is tirelessly working to secure benefits for club professionals. Please take a moment now to support our industry by sending a letter to your Congressional leaders. For the sake of our industry, please don’t continue to bill your members after you’ve fired your staff and have closed your locations.
- When it comes to managing financial risk, the resilience equation during this pandemic is simple: Cash = resilience. The historic U.S. stimulus bill is the first infusion of cash to address the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Our government will pay wages of some workers who remain on their companies’ payrolls. The stimulus package will also sustain other workers who have lost their jobs. Based on the latest Covid-19 hospital resource use forecasts from University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics, it is safe to assume businesses will need a 60-day to 90-day cash reserve. If you need financial support, the S. Small Business Administration has published information on loan resources. For our Canadian customers, the Government of Canada has announced a new small and medium-sized Enterprise Loan and Guarantee program as well as an expansion of the Work-Sharing program.
- Our customers have made a range of decisions regarding billing. About 70% of our clubs have entirely stopped billing. Other facilities have continued billing while implementing new payment concepts and virtual training options to members. If our customers choose to continue billing, Motionsoft will hold a reserve of each new billing file submitted for processing. The reserve will protect you and us from an anticipated, material increase in chargebacks. Motionsoft will monitor chargeback activity and will normalize reserve levels as soon as conditions permit. If you continue to bill and have questions about reserves during the pandemic, please call our Financial Services team at 1-800-323-1005 and choose option #3.
- Concentrate on developing realistic, pressure-tested operating assumptions across all business in-flows and outflows at a very detailed level for a rolling 13-week period to frame out the operating numbers that will fuel your resilience plan. Include assumptions that your club is likely to be closed for a period of time. Start by quantifying the impact on your business and members. Your investors, GMs, CFO, comptroller, group fitness director, and member management lead will be key staff members you need to bring into the conversation.
- It is critical to have fact-based conversations with your business partners including your landlord, bank, and creditors.
- This too shall pass. Plan ahead and be ready to resume operations once the COVID-19 pandemic is over. Motionsoft is working to help our Customers to develop re-opening plans to roll-out when a resumption of service date is known. Our focus has been around scenarios to turn billing system back on so that businesses can get their membership billing back to normal.
- Everyone is dealing with the immense stress that the COVID-19 pandemic has placed on us and our businesses. Don’t forget to take care of yourself and your family. Schedule a time each day to meditate and exercise.