To give this message context, I am writing this on 03/18/20. The US has 6,519 confirmed COVID-19 cases, there have been 204,000 cases worldwide, and the DJIA is at 20,315. Schools, restaurants, bars, and other “non-essential” businesses are closed nationwide. Tom Brady just signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; the world is in chaos.
We made the decision to postpone the Spring Executive Forum three weeks ago today. At the time, there were fewer than 500 confirmed cases in Italy. We were hearing rumblings of border closures and quarantines. As crazy as it felt, we thought there was a risk of ARM members getting stuck abroad, so we made the decision to postpone. What seemed like a possible overreaction three weeks ago seems like a simple decision today. Things are changing quickly.
As we are facing unprecedented changes in our daily lives, ARM is working hard to adapt to this fluid situation. We are working to determine how ARM can deliver value to its members in the world of social distancing. Personal interaction between members will be limited for a period of time, which is very unfortunate given that we constantly hear that “networking” is one of the greatest ARM values.
ARM has hosted webinars for more than 10 years. These sessions are free and available online to our members to view at their leisure. This has proven to be a successful way to interact with our members, and we see this as a continued viable meeting method in the near term.
In addition to webinars, ARM has built an impressive knowledge library that is accessible to our members. The knowledge library has information on almost any topic that applies to your business. I encourage you and your team to explore its offerings.
In my last letter, I wrote that ARM’s goals remained unchanged; we are dedicated to making incremental and sustainable changes that increase the value that ARM offers its members. The COVID-19 pandemic doesn’t change this. ARM’s delivery methods and personal interactions are going to be different for a period of time. ARM will try some new ways to interact with its members, some of which will work and some that will teach us what to do better next time.
Finally, ARM is on solid financial ground. We have worked diligently to build cash reserves in preparation for times like this. We have analyzed our projected cashflows, and we know we will weather this storm and come out the other side in great shape.
Thank you for your continued support of ARM!
Solar Plastics, LLC