My April “Editor’s Note” examined what’s new with the business of lighting, rather than the art and science of our profession. Now, I write this June “Editor’s Note” four weeks after the world was knocked off its axis by the COVID-19 pandemic. No walk of life or business has been immune from the effects.
In our industry, the first big story was the postponement, in succession, of Light + Building, LEDucation and LightFair. That was quickly followed by detailed updates from lighting organizations that ran the gamut from designers and manufacturers to trade associations. Without exception, these messages were a mixture of concern and reassurance that business will carry on. Many companies emphasized the particular strengths they bring to the marketplace in troubling times. Here is some of what they had to say:
- In anticipation of Maryland closing down non-essential businesses, Design Collective in Baltimore explained to its customers how it had already stress-tested its remote work systems and activated its Business Continuity Plan to ensure operations would continue.
- In its customer outreach, L’Observatoire emphasized its international footprint and mastery of remote work: “Our clients and consultants are located around the globe, so we are already well-versed in virtual meetings and communication.”
- Focusing its message on education, Acclaim Lighting announced its strategy for replacing the live product demos planned for trade shows and at client workplaces. “We’ve invested in cutting-edge web conference technology which allows us to showcase our products in the next-best fashion with personalized one-on-one presentation.”
- Another manufacturer took a product-centric approach, emailing customers about a handheld UVC fluorescent lamp device used for sanitizing work stations, tables and computers.
- Finally, the National Lighting Bureau announced that its members were offering free LED lights for the remote sites being set up across the U.S. to test for the virus.
These are just some of the stories. For more on how the industry has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, our coverage starts on p. 24.
We press on.