When Covid-19 first hit and people rushed to the shops to panic buy stocks for the coming pandemic, there were viral social media trends that emerged for all the wrong reasons. In one example, an organisation had chosen to mark-up Lysol wipes to unaffordable level, for which social media was outraged and the brand damage was complete as the company locked their Twitter account.
Dahl says start-ups need to make “a strategic trade-off” when deciding how much help to offer. “You want to be doing these things. It’s the right thing to do,” he says, “but you don’t want to also go bankrupt”.
In the end, these sorts of events are the perfect time for companies to reassess their priorities and for those at the top to evaluate important aspects of company leadership such as employee welfare and inclusion. Ultimately, initiatives borne out of positive corporate stewardship are as important as managing the bottom line, not only because it’s good for everyone who may come in touch with the company, but because it also happens to be good for the company itself.