Shawn Gallagher, our fixed operations manager, reflected on the trucking industry shifts, helping our community and the lessons learned because of the pandemic.
In February 2020, we shook hands and hugged without hesitation. We packed into convention centers, meeting rooms, restaurants and concert halls — networking, talking, laughing and dancing less than six feet apart.
Then it all went away. In March 2020, as the coronavirus pandemic shut down Nevada and the entire nation, we started bumping elbows instead of shaking hands. We connected via Zoom rather than network in person. We relied on breweries and distilleries for hand sanitizer. We snapped up toilet paper and pasta at breakneck pace. We wore masks when we shopped.
All the while, the business community here was impacted in countless ways, big and small. Some shut down completely, others struggled to reopen, and many more found innovative ways to shift their business model to survive — and some even thrived due to a pandemic-related rise in demand.
One year later, the NNBW fielded responses from more than 20 business owners and executives in Northern Nevada — bars, banks, contractors, developers, Realtors, healthcare providers and more — to find out the biggest lessons they have learned since March 2020, and the biggest differences in how their industry now conducts business.
“Our business strategies have always been built around adapting to change and adversity; 2020 was no exception. However, the year certainly represented a new threshold of change and obstacles. As an essential business, we prioritized safety in order to continue to support vital industries and adapted our daily operations to the needs of our customers. We understood that our role, whether it be to support first responders, municipalities, trucking fleets or trades, depended on us being flexible and expanding past the way in which we as an industry defined customer service prior to 2020. What stands out to me is that in the middle of a difficult situation for the world, that our team not only went above and beyond in what they did for our customers, but that this mentality extended past our walls and into the community. I am proud to say that we took the opportunity to give back to local nonprofits, first responders and other local businesses. It’s important to us that our community stays healthy and robust and I am very proud of the selflessness we saw in our team. It can be easy to demonstrate support for others when times are good. It’s when that is more difficult, that the willingness to support others becomes defining.”
Read the full feature here One Year Later: Northern Nevada businesses reflect on industry shifts, lessons learned due to the pandemic.