Week One Reflections

 Monday, March 30, was my first day as Worldwide ERC®’s President & CEO. Every beginning with a new organization is unique, but I can honestly say that this one was unparalleled in many ways. My commute was certainly the shortest I’ve ever had, operating from my home office as we all shelter in place. An entirely virtual onboarding experience with the leadership team was a first. Replacing an office tour and handshakes to meet and greet the staff with the now ubiquitous, Brady Bunch-style video conference call screen was a new one for me, too.

 Clearly, the COVID-19 pandemic is presenting challenges on a global scale that are unlike any we’ve seen before. Which is what made the incredibly warm welcome and outpouring of support I have received from the entire Worldwide ERC® community all the more meaningful. As you are in the midst of navigating tough business decisions, implementing workforce migration, safety, support, continuity and recovery plans, caring for yourself and loved ones and quite possibly even stepping into the role of a homeschooling teacher, so many of you have still taken the time to connect on LinkedIn or jot a note of introduction and good wishes. I am very grateful for that support.

As I’ve been listening to and learning more about all of you and the ways in which you’re navigating your businesses, careers and workforces, I’m mindful that challenging times are also inspiring times. They push us to innovate, they reinforce the value of human connection and caring, and they remind us to truly appreciate some of life’s simplest, yet most important things.

As this first week comes to a close, and we look to the weeks ahead, I don’t know how long we will all be operating like this.
What is clear to me, however, is that the Worldwide ERC® team has the technology, the passion and the skills to keep the business running and to fully support you in yours.

What’s Next?

On Tuesday, April 7, we will launch the first of a Town Hall webinar series, and continue to host them weekly as needed to bring you up-to-the-minute information on the pandemic, its impact on our industry, legislative responses and how to navigate financial relief opportunities.  

We will continue to update our COVID-19 dedicated webpage with news, resources, survey results and opportunities to share feedback. We encourage you to participate in the Community and our dedicated Duty of Care Group discussions, helping us all manage our policies and programs as we move along this continuum together.  

We will continue to convene virtual events and offer online learning and professional development opportunities. We know that now is the time to ensure we have the skills and plans in place to emerge better and stronger than before, so we will continue to launch new products and services to keep us all connected, learning and ready for the future.

I look forward to the days when we can meet in person. Until then, you can expect to hear from me frequently via articles on our website, through our social media channels, the Community and in virtual interviews.  And I’d like to continue hearing from all of you, too. So please consider my virtual door open, and reach out with your comments, questions, concerns or ideas at lshotwell@worldwideerc.org.  

I appreciate the trust that has been placed in me to lead this esteemed organization and our industry forward and wish you all continued health and safety.

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