As the world begins to prepare for a COVID-19 recovery period, it is no surprise that nearly every human life has been impacted. The devastation is centering around personal health, finances, supply availability, jobs, and businesses. In less than four months, the coronavirus epidemic created anxiety, along with grief and depression for individuals, families, and companies across the globe. In fact, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate went from an all-time low of 3.5 in December 2019 to 4.4% in March 2020, then 14.7% in April 2020, totaling over 22 million unemployed, and still growing! While it is indeed a time of uncertainty for many, it is also a time in which people and businesses can reflect, consider what we’ve learned, and begin to take action toward both recovery and a healthier, safer future.
We’ve Learned So Much
The coronavirus has impacted many people differently, but one thing is certain: such a crisis makes businesses and individuals re-evaluate identity, the current state of affairs, achievements, ability to move forward, health, and so much more. If there is a positive outcome from the terrible COVID-19 outbreak, it is “lessons learned.” While some regions are still in the middle of the devastation and other areas are just beginning to think about recovery,
there is still much to witness and learn. It’s just not over yet, but if we take stock of what we’ve learned so far, we can turn some aspects of this disaster into something good.
What We’d Do Differently in Terms of Health?
From a health perspective, we’ve heard the daily briefings and online doctors over and over. Most health actions are common sense, but the reminders can never be stressed enough (especially as many people do not take the spread seriously). We need to take every precaution to protect ourselves, family, friends, and businesses.
- Wear a mask or face scarf and gloves in the public
- Keep a 6′ distance from other people
- Wash/sanitize hands regularly
- Sanitize all surfaces regularly
- Keep sanitizing products on hand
- Stock a supply of medical supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE)
- Bring essential medical supplies and drug production back to the US
- Create a will describing your wishes, and make sure it’s notarized
- Consider a diversified investment (such as gold) and get a better night’s sleep
What We’d Do Differently in Terms of Finances?
Personal wealth has been hit hard. Most long-term investment plans are shot. Many people living week-to-week are now behind on their payments. Small businesses are suffering, losing staff, applying for loans with no clue how it will be paid back, and possibly having to close their doors. Overall, financial portfolios have been devastated. While it seems there is no hope, we have learned that we will recover, but we must “be prepared” for a future disaster. Precious metals are indeed an attractive solution in times like these. There is urgency in making this type of investment because premiums on metals are fastly increasing due to current demand and limited supplies. Some actions to consider:
- Create a financial disaster preparedness plan
- Place our jobs back on American soil
- Never be dependent on others or the government; work to be financially self-sufficient
- Re-evaluate personal stock market investments
- Order gold and silver now to hedge a financial portfolio with alternative investments while supplies last and before premiums increase
- Set up a backup plan independent of government funding
- Move money out of the banks and invest in other commodities such as real estate and metals
- Search for alternative currencies
- Move some funds out of the financial system
What We’d Do Differently in Terms of Goods and Supplies
We’ve learned about the goods and supplies we desperately need daily, including fuel, food, health and sanitization products, and paper supplies. First and foremost, we’d stock up on paper goods and disinfectants! The real reason for the shortage of these items, however, is a result of human hoarding. Because of high volatility in the markets, the precious metals industry is encountering major problems accumulating metals to fund peoples’ orders because of hoarding. Also, mint production companies are closed; therefore, new inventory is not produced, resulting in limited supplies. If everyone stocked up in goods and supplies over time while they are readily available, next time, perhaps the need for hoarding would be minimized (doubtful). In the meantime, we’ve learned we may not be able to depend on the system to get the fuel, food, and the supplies we need. What can we do differently?
- Create a personal disaster preparedness plan
- No longer rely on other countries to supply us with oil, prescriptions, and medical supplies
- Stock up on non-perishables such as dried foods, paper goods, and disinfectants – at least a three-month supply
- Plant a garden and stock it with fruits, vegetables, and herbs (save the seeds)
- Store some water; a water heater is an excellent supply, but one can’t have too much
- Create a camping tub (or enhance an existing one) to camp out at home if needed, and that includes propane, a camping stove, lighting, etc.
- Make a list of the personal items needed to survive in a crisis (medications, health and safety items, water, grooming aids, etc.), and keep them in stock (with expiration dates in mind)
- Stock up on precious metals as a hedge against inflation before the metals cost more
What We’d Do Differently in Terms of Businesses and Jobs
So far, we’ve learned that most small businesses and individuals are not financially self-sufficient for more than one month. However, disappointing that is, we recognize the need to make changes in order to create a three-month survival plan. Governor Gavin Newsom just announced on 5/15/20 that the State of California will quarantine for an additional three months because there is no vaccine or proven effective medication to date for the coronavirus. It was announced that we could wait 18 or more months for this to happen. As a business owner (or an employee), several actions can be taken to prepare for this delay or another unexpected event:
- Prepare gold and silver tangible assets as your backup plan to manage risk, promote stability, hedge against the U.S. Dollar, and hedge against the upcoming inflation that may arise.
- Stock up on supplies and equipment employees might need
- Take on backlogged projects that need attention
- Design a resiliency plan and present it to staff for ideas and testing
- Revisit regular suppliers and ensure long-term relationships and agreements; so the company can count on them in the case of an emergency
- Lead by example during a time of crisis; show work teams they are working for a caring company; assist in motivating and engaging staff to keep them on board
- Maintain transparent communications throughout a difficult period
- Visit the CDC and US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to become familiar with current labor laws
- Protect employee health and safety: Consider flexible schedules, PPE on hand, avoiding personal contact, health posters, symptom trackers in place, remote workforce or shift-work to minimize exposure, etc.
- In the case of a layoff, provide employment options and guidance
We’ve Learned To Be Prepared
As a nation, there are many actions individuals and companies can take to prepare for the present and the future. Both worldwide and nationwide crises are inevitable, but rather than wait for the next disaster to happen, take action now. We’ve learned ONE crucial thing: we can be more prepared. It’s time to assemble health-, finance-, supplies-, job-, and business-preparedness plans. While no two disasters are the same, some or all of these areas of human impact are likely. Work with those you love and employ to devise plans today that could prove worthy for the future in this unsettled atmosphere in which we live and work. Consider gold and silver as stable insurance to hedge yourself and your family.