Stormy Seas Calmer Waters….
Without stating the obvious it’s still an unusual time we are living in and living through. We may all be in the same storm but not all of us are in the same boat. Freshview along with many of our customers have and are continuing to uncover challenges in the business that have never been experienced before, and hopefully will never do so again.
The old saying suggests, ‘only the strong survive’ but its evident that its more important to be nimble, flexible and above all be adventurous during these testing times. Throughout this period we have been in constant dialogue with much of our customer base and their approaches to the challenge has varied enormously. The nature of the business plus geographical location have played a significant part on what approaches are possible, or perhaps not. Some have dared to be different, taken leaps of faith out of their traditional comfort zone, jumped through hopes, there is a host of analogies that we could use.
Thinking different has never been more relevant right now, and this is the approach Freshview have taken. Our catering customers by and large stopped trading on that fabled date March 20th 2020, a conundrum for us to put it mildly but we were determined to continue trading. Like much of Britain’s businesses we exercised the furlough scheme for a number of our staff and hunkered down in meetings to discuss strategies and change.
Questions we faced were what are we doing to reduce the shock and immediate impact? How can we manage the frustration and trepidation of our team and support them through this period of unknown? Transparency is a fundamental within our culture, we had no need or desire to ‘sugarcoat’ facts that stared us in the face or be overly optimistic. Sensible, pragmatic dialogue with our team has helped the business and staff feel more comfortable, as comfortable as is possible at present.
We have made mistakes during this period of change, we would do some things differently if this happened all again, we have learned more about our team, the efficiencies of our business, the areas we can improve and we’ve learned more about our customers too, some surprises, we have supported them where possible, and taken some additional risks.
Summing up, Freshview today is a fitter, more agile business than ever. We like to think this curve of change which has been more akin to a tidal wave has brought change to our business we would never have made or considered before. There are some positives we are taking, we have survived when some have fallen, and what we do now in both the short and long term will be with new knowledge and some new approaches. In our ten year history we have never faced a challenge remotely close to this as we are sure that most reading this will have witnessed too. Freshview is here today, tomorrow and long into a prosperous for us all future. We are a supplier looking forward to the future whilst not forgetting the lessons we have learned.