7 December 2020
For many, the COVID-19 pandemic has been the restrictive dam holding them back from doing everyday necessities, including their jobs. This dam, however, has also formed a new reservoir of opportunities for different businesses, which have each managed to find a way to thrive during these isolated times.
With safety and entertainment being even more prominent essentials nowadays, it’s unsurprising that the face mask industry and streaming services have both experienced an influx of consumers.
According to a BBC News report in April 2020, almost 16 million people created Netflix accounts in the first three months of the year. Eric Haggstrom, an eMarketer analyst, said that Netflix would continue “to be the media company least impacted by Covid-19.”
However, other companies, that are much smaller compared to Netflix, have also been able to profit throughout the pandemic-induced recession.
Daniel and Josely Lima are co-owners of an auto transportation company, called AD Fast Transport, in Maryland that has managed to stay afloat through this year’s trials. With the two having separate responsibilities, they have experienced different challenges that stems from the changes that came with the pandemic.
“I have to use masks, communicate far away from other people, use gloves,” said Mr. Lima.
Mrs. Lima hasn’t had to make the same adjustments, considering she works from home as the company dispatcher. She claimed her work “hasn’t changed at all,” and that there aren’t any distinct contrasts between before and during the pandemic business-wise.
“Just the working hours have changed a little because dealerships have changed hours, so I have to be more alert about that,” Mrs. Lima said, which has affected Mr. Lima with his work in a similar way.
They both said that their income has stayed the same as well, although they have had to adapt and change accordingly to maintain their usual cash flow.
Originally, their transportation routes were from Maryland to Ohio and back, but they had to start going to other places like Missouri and Michigan. These routes waste more diesel fuel because they’re farther away from Maryland, but they still make the same amount of money.
Mrs. Lima, in addition to being the co-owner of AD Fast Transport, owns a house cleaning company called Lima’s Cleaning, which has had more difficulties.
“Everything changed. They [her employees] have to use masks inside every house, they have to use gloves, and the hours have changed because the clients’ kids are always at home doing online school,” explained Mrs. Lima.
In the beginning of the year, she admitted that the cleaning business had gone through a rough patch, what with clients being more prudent about having other people in their home during the pandemic. However, she was able to make compromises and learn to be more flexible with working hours that would benefit the client, along with sustaining the regular income level for her and her employees.
“We change, they [her employees] have to drive around more,” Mrs. Lima explained. “So if we started at 10 am, I have to go to the farther house and then circle back and do the other house. And that’s more work for them.”
Meanwhile, businesses that were expected to fail due to the pandemic’s detrimental effect on the housing market have also encountered new and considerably better opportunities.
Ana Frazier, a Customer Services Advocate for a packaging supply company called Victory Packaging, said that her CEO claimed that July, August, September, and October were “record breaking months.” This has only been possible because they’ve prioritized supplying U-Haul and the post office more than usual, while not cutting any other lines of product since the beginning of the year.
Frazier also felt that the pandemic has had a positive impact on her individual work life in general.
“Personally, I like that customers must remain outside. While it seems somewhat rude, it also takes some pressure off us while we are working to ensure they get their materials in a timely manner and correctly,” she said. “I also really like the newfound hygiene in the country.”
At Victory Packaging, they’ve even managed to gain more customers as well, considering more people and businesses have to ship or package their products during the pandemic.
For Frazier, she hasn’t had to adapt much either, or felt that her work has been too different.
“Eh, same thing, less traffic,” Frazier said.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic has put the world on pause, many businesses have persevered through it all, despite their initial thoughts.
“I thought I would fail, and I would have to shut down my business,” Mr. Lima admitted.
Thankfully, these three businesses have stood tall and, as they all said, prospered during the pandemic.