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COVID-19 brings unique challenges, but also brings unique opportunities. The way business is done has been changed forever. COVID-19 is a disruptor and it will require innovation and creativity to keep your business and cash flow moving forward. We talked about this on our Facebook Live.
Follow us on social to stay up to date on upcoming (virtual) events.
Check back weekly for updates on resources for business, family and the future of work.
Social distancing guidelines have been extended through the end of April 2020. That means that for those of us in Oklahoma, we’re following the Safer at Home initiative - only leaving the house to:
Visit a doctor or pharmacy
To care for a loved one
Or to go to what’s considered an essential job (such as healthcare)
The CDC also now recommends that we use cloth face masks whenever going into places like grocery stores or places where there are more people. Find more info on this as cdc.gov.
By staying informed, it helps to minimize fear. Here are some resources to learn more about COVID-19.
Have questions about travel - see what the State Department has to say about travel.
Many businesses have had to adjust operations to comply with local and federal agencies to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
Tulsa People has put together a list of businesses and their modified operating procedures such as ordering delivery or take out instead of dining in at your favorite restaurant.
Here’s a list of North Tulsa food concepts you can support as well by purchasing meals from local restaurants.
Resources for Business, Family and the Future of Work
Many people are moving to working remotely, where possible, and businesses are working to adjust their operations to comply with local and federal guidelines issued in this ever evolving situation.
1. Business Resources
There’s people losing their jobs, companies going bankrupt, people trying to figure out how to pay their rent, feed their kids and keep their cool. And it’s a lot to handle.
Do you offer a food-based service? Let’s talk “no-contact” deliveries to keep you and your customers safe. If you’re making local deliveries, you can still practice social distancing and get the food delivered by making the arrangement to leave food on the doorstep, take payments online or through a service like #CashApp.
Do you work at a local restaurant and have been laid off? The Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation, in collaboration with the Oklahoma Restaurant Association (ORA), has started a fund for laid off restaurant workers. LTFF donated $100,000 to the Tulsa Restaurant Employee Relief Fund as a match challenge. A total of 235 Tulsa restaurant workers will receive $1,000 the first week of April and more grants will be distributed as more funds come in.
Do you need funding to help with payroll or other business operations? There are many funding options to help your business survive. This is not a light decision. So, try to think long-term when making your decision. Don’t take out a loan unless you absolutely need to. With that being said:
SBA offers relief loans up to $2 million
TEDC is offering loans up to $75,000
And Kiva has increased its loan limit to $15,000 with no interest - and potential for a 6 month repayment grace period.
Also, keep in mind, anything larger than $20,000 may require collateral.
Think rationally rather than emotionally. COVID-19 is temporary, what in the long-term is going to seem like a relatively short amount of time.
Here's the breakdown of some of the loan programs out there:
Economic Injury Disaster Loan
According to the SBA website, the Cash Advance associated with the EIDL (Economic Injury Disaster Loan) does not have to be paid back. This loan can be used to cover operating costs, payroll and more. Apply for the loan at the SBA website.
SBA Paycheck Protection Program to apply with local lender
Tulsa Responds funding
2. Family Resources
This situation is ongoing and will last at least another 30 days, if not longer. In the meantime, we want to speak to the needs you may have today.
Have questions about filing for unemployment relief. There are requirements, such as 6 weeks work history and more. And the CARES Act allows for both self-employed and unemployed individuals to apply for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. Check out the OESC unemployment website for details.
Follow us on social for tips we’ll be sharing about how to manage the situation with kids being at home while schools are closed. Most schools are closing for the remainder of the school year. For those who need internet access, check out www.cox.com/c2c for free internet options at home.
We also want to let you know there are options available for those having a difficult time getting their utilities paid. Many utility companies are postponing disconnects and offering relief during COVID-19. Make sure to reach out to your utility company to make arrangements.
Here’s some updates from a few of the local companies:
ONG. Suspended customer disconnects through April 15.
OG&E. Suspended customer disconnects through April 14.
PSO. Temporarily suspended disconnects for non-payment.
Tulsa Water and Sewer. Temporarily suspended disconnects for non-payment.
COX Cable. Offering assistance and plans to keep residents connected during the COVID-19 response.
Mobile Phone Service. In the event you are unable to pay your bill, check with your service provider to see if there are any options available to help customers during this time.
3. Future of Work
Did you know that many innovative companies emerged after the recession of 2008? Companies like AirBNB, WhatsApp, Venmo, Groupon, IG, Uber, Pinterest, Slack, Square -- just to name a few.
“A 2019 McKinsey study on the future of work found that at least 30 percent of activities at about 60 percent of all occupations are technically automatable.” - Katie Burke, Chief People Officer at Hubspot
Look at these things that you may be putting into place today to use in the long-term to evolve your business, to innovate and grow.
It is time to start thinking outside the box. What problems do you see around you that you have a creative solution for? What is your biggest headache right now? Research solutions and see how you can build a business idea out of that equation. Then, go read our blog about How to Validate Your Business Idea.
Follow us on social where we've discussed business resources, family resources and the future of work.