Expert Panel

Focus on these things to succeed in Executive Leadership / General Management

6 Inspiring Examples of Business Innovation in the Face of Coronavirus


Just about every news outlet currently features sad, frightening, and frustrating headlines, but there are bright moments amid the COVID-19 Outbreak - you just have to look closely. Businesses across the country are proving that we can come together in this time of need, and companies of all sizes, in numerous industries, are answering the call for help amidst this unprecedented pandemic.


As the world faces a global pandemic, the likes of which has not been seen in centuries, business owners are jumping into action, making big strategy shifts, and showing up for their communities. Here are 6 inspiring examples of business responses to COVID-19:



1.   iPromo


This Chicago-based business typically sells promotional products for businesses and events. However, once the Coronavirus outbreak hit, CEO Leo Friedman immediately shifted gears. After spending long nights speaking with overseas suppliers, Friedman was able to secure deals with contacts in China for personal protective equipment (PPE), including digital thermometers, hand sanitizer, and face masks. Friedman has launched a new category on his site to provide these products to hospitals, business owners, and citizens alike.


Image courtesy of iPromo

2.   &Pizza


Business owners are trying their hardest to retain as much of their staff as possible, and some companies are able to go a step further. &Pizza CEO Michael Lastoria let employees know that the company would offer unlimited, free pizzas to both workers and their immediate families. Hospital workers with identification also qualify for free meals. In addition, the company pledged to raise their team members’ hourly pay rates by $1, and provided 14 days of “health and safety pay” to any &Pizza staff members who have tested positive for Coronavirus.



3.   LVMH Moët Hennessy


LVMH Moët Hennessy, the parent company behind Louis Vuitton, Fenty Beauty, and Benefit Cosmetics, has switched from manufacturing designer perfumes and colognes to manufacturing hand sanitizer. In a generous move, the company has promised to deliver this hard-to-find product directly to French healthcare authorities at no cost.



4.   Apple


Tech giants are also lending a hand, and Apple is one of said companies leading the charge. This powerhouse organization created a Covid-19 website and app, which provide COVID-19 screening questions and key resources for the public regarding testing and social distancing efforts. These apps were developed in partnership with the CDC, FEMA, and the White House’s coronavirus task force. Check out the screenshot of their Coronavirus screening questionnaire below:


Image courtesy of Apple

In addition to the abovementioned app, Apple donated 10 million face masks to healthcare workers across the globe.



5.   Fanatics


Fanatics, a Pennsylvania-based company that manufactures official MLB player jerseys, will now use its facilities to help create masks and gowns for healthcare providers. The garments for healthcare workers will be crafted using the same quality material worn by the Yankees and Phillies, and will be distributed to the hardworking health facility personnel across Pennsylvania.



6.   Hertz


This well-known rental car company is providing New York City health care workers with free rental cars. Qualified personnel can pick up their free vehicle rental from any one of the company’s 19 locations in the NYC area. As of this writing, the promotion is set to last through April 30th. These are one-time rentals but they can be booked for up to a month, and include both cars and SUVS. Healthcare workers must provide valid driver’s licenses and medical identification in order to qualify.



Final Notes


Businesses of all sizes are answering the call for help amidst this pandemic. You can do your part, too; support local businesses in your area, see how you might be able to donate to nearby healthcare providers, and keep in touch with loved ones during these challenging times.


What is a realistic success horizon for Leaders?