Distology CEO shares insight on acting ethically during a crisis

Blog | Posted: 30-03-2020
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Hayley Roberts Quote

Stop the bus I want to get off…!

Panic buying toilet roll, customers spitting at retail staff, stealing from the NHS… what’s next – looting??

This is not a philosophical post, I just want to air my concern on the panic and hysteria that seems to be impacting not just society but business in the channel and how we could all act a little more ‘human’.

The channel, in my opinion is a slick operation with fantastic technology and fundamentally brilliant relationships. I am proud to be in an industry where I learn something new every day and in the main am humbled by some of the brilliant technologies and people I have come across.

We are living in a surreal world and not one of us can predict the immediate, let alone long-term future of our businesses and the lasting economic impact COVID-19 will leave. However, it is now we (the channel) need to, like never before support one another’s businesses, forecasts and cash flow in order to survive these extremely tough times.

I am hearing stories of vendors not being flexible on payment terms, distributors putting small partners on stop as they might be a day late on payments and of course customers just simply not paying their invoices.

Worrying for all of us.

But this is a great time for channel to be creative and add value like never before. Look at Louis Vuitton making hand sanitiser, Dyson making ventilators and now F1 teams getting involved in replicating specific ventilators to avoid a backlog in ICU. A fantastic display of transferable skills and a common goal of trying to ride the storm of this virus quickly and effectively.

Makes you feel good, no?

There’s a line I always come back to when reviewing business relationships, and it’s that you don’t remember all of the positive things a business has done for you, but you will definitely remember that one good thing a business did for you during the hard times.

Unfortunately, we all need to be aware that if we don’t act ethically and professionally now, treating the supply chain with respect, then any negativity will be remembered for far longer than the COVID-19 outbreak.  

Imagine if channel players worked together to educate one another on what products to focus on in times like this. Vendors, resellers and distributors forming advisory boards regarding best practice and what to do on ‘at risk’ deals and for those partners and customers in need allowing flexibility on payment terms…?

Simple solutions requiring communication, problem solving and action. Exactly what the channel represents anyway!

None of what is happening now is anybody’s fault. Let’s be ‘human’ about this in a business environment and think less of short-term transaction and more about supporting the human race – let’s do this by providing security and remote access technology to those who need it in the most ethical way possible.

And whilst many of you will be sneering at my viewpoint. Remember, courage and success comes from vulnerability and none of us should be afraid of failure in doing our level best at these times.. I know I’m not..

Stay safe, stay well and keep talking 🙂

Hayley Roberts

Please contact the Distology team to discuss any existing or new deals and how we might be able to help.