Since the coronavirus pandemic first emerged in the United States in February, countless businesses have been forced to make significant adjustments in response. From restaurants closing their doors to dine-in seating to retail stores turning to online shopping to reach customers, there are countless examples of how businesses are adjusting to the pandemic. Below are some of the great examples of leadership that has happened during the coronavirus pandemic.
Kevin Johnson, Starbucks
After hearing of the impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had, Starbucks Chief Executive Officer Kevin Johnson released a statement in response that many praised. Not only did he speak with empathy about the hardships that countless people are experiencing, but he provided a strong message of unity. In addition to this, the company was quick to expand its paid leave policy and provided a $3.00 hourly raise for employees who continued to work through the pandemic.
Arne Sorenson, Marriott International CEO
Another important way that leaders have handled the coronavirus pandemic is by being as honest as possible throughout the process. The case of Arne Sorenson, the Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, provides a strong example of remaining transparent, even if it is bad news to be delivered. After determining the extent that the company had been impacted, Sorenson released a statement that provided an honest look into the difficulties that they are facing. While it was likely difficult for him to reveal the extent of the damage from the coronavirus, he showed respect for his employees by being honest.
Known for his incredible work with Microsoft, Bill Gates now focuses on philanthropy and provides a great example of leadership in the coronavirus pandemic. Through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bill Gates has been working on finding an effective vaccine for the coronavirus and started eight different clinical trials for vaccines in February. Additionally, his foundation provided much needed medical care assistance to underserved countries in an effort to reduce the risk of the coronavirus overwhelming their hospitals. Throughout the process, he has remained active in his leadership role and is committed to increasing awareness of the ongoing public health crisis.