Moving Through The Crisis

Client Memo – April 6, 2020

Dear Valued Client and Friend of Reaction Internet:

I hope this message finds you well and in a safe place in the world in the face of the Coronavirus crisis.  Let me first remind and reinforce the wisest sentiment that applies to us all, regardless of our beliefs and culture: “This too shall pass”.  

By nature, we are resourceful and resilient.  Our company’s relationship with you is such that you are running a small, medium or large business.  Regardless of the size, being in business requires panache, tact and a high level of unflappability. We are not stopped easily, though we do hit speed bumps occasionally.  Our team is cut from the same cloth as you and we are privileged to be in partnership with or service to you.

These days, I am reminded of the wisdom of my mom, ever the eternal optimist:  

“When the going gets tough, the tough get going.”

“Winners never quit.  And, quitters never win.”

“When you find yourself going through hell, keep going.”

“What can’t keep going forever must surely come to an end.”

Let’s take some guidance from those who lived through far worse than what we are currently experiencing.  

Perhaps you or your parents or grandparents left behind political tyranny.  Or maybe they left their friends and family and their old world familiarity to come and make a new path and a build on hopes for new prosperity in a new land. 

Perhaps you have inherited what your parents left behind and you are working hard to build on their progress.

Perhaps you started with nothing and pulled yourself up by your own bootstraps. Whatever the case, and whatever differences there may be between us, we have some major common bonds: 

  1. We ALL face an endless stream of obstacles and setbacks.  We all work to overcome them.  And, we all bring our best efforts to face our challenges with fortitude and determination.
  2. To move through the current crisis, we must recognize our common interests of cooperation and do our parts individually to bring about resolution.  Whether your boat is big or small, all boats will rise and fall with the tide of the crisis. We are all in this together.
  3. At our company, our primary focus is to do our part to maintain all services while simultaneously attending to our personal priorities and family needs.  This is a unique and challenging balancing act and it requires your cooperation to do the same. If we all do our part, then supply chains will continue, the sick will get the best support system possible and those of us who are not directly infected by illness can stay that way.

We may not contribute directly to a cure.  But, there is nobility in keeping our link in the chain intact.  Our focus is on business continuation.

From a service perspective, these are our priorities for you:

  1. To maintain all operating systems and servers so that email and web and e-commerce systems continue to function.
  2. To provide responsive attention for updates needed to existing systems.
  3. To proceed on any work-in-progress that started before the crisis.  Yes, existing projects are expected to be delayed but not stopped.


Help Us To Help You

We have done our best to reduce costs and in many cases to reduce or discount fees for our services.  However, some services simply cannot be reduced because they cover the base expenses of keeping systems running.  We rely on over 200 servers spread across North America to deliver our services. We rely on 3rd parties who require payment just to “keep the lights on”, so to speak.  We continue to pay our bills on time. Please help us to do that. We thank all those who have kept the service chain unbroken by remitting payment for services, especially for services already rendered in January, February and March.  We ask everyone to do their part. Help us to help you.

On a personal note, this is not the time to blame anyone or to spread conspiracy theories.  Err on the side of science. People are basically decent and cooperative. Let’s stay that way.  It’s historically demonstrable that viruses come and go. Take solace in the fact that we have better remedies, more prosperity to draw upon and more enlightened science than ever in our past.  That insurance companies can turn a handsome profit, is proof-positive that there is more advancement, than retreat in our beautiful world.

Armoured by this, we can rest assured, that “This too shall pass.”

Some Positive Vibes

Here are some positive vibes for you to consider:

Remember This Is Temporary.  While the economy has taken a big hit and while business finances will be adversely affected, remember that the damage is more to our psyche than to our infrastructure.  Wars, terrorist attacks, and natural disasters leave a path of actual physical destruction, all of which require expensive rebuilding. In this case, factories and businesses may have closed their doors temporarily, but they haven’t been destroyed.  While some of us will inevitably suffer illness, most of us will recover with stronger immunity than ever before. In business, we are merely in a pause. This means recovery can and will happen rapidly.

Buy Local.  Support local enterprise.  Restaurants are switching to curbside pickup.  Small grocers and farm outlets are offering online ordering and door to door delivery.  Lake Land Meats in West St. Catharines will take your order, take payment via e-transfer, and on arrival, they will walk your order to a table outside their retail shop.  Go on. Place an order and drive on up. On the weekend, we enjoyed some delicious Arctic Char from Lake Land. Next weekend, we will enjoy some locally-grown beef. Support your local farmer so that they can in turn support you back.  My favourite coffee shop is Dineen on Yonge Street in Toronto. I will generally come away from that shop once a month with a 5lb bag of their AMAZING espresso beans. At first, I was regretting the prospect of losing this daily treat til it occurred to me that maybe they would send me some beans by delivery.  ‘If Mohammed can’t go to the mountain, Mohammed brings the mountain to him’. Now, we have a ‘mountain’ of beans in our cupboard. Thank you, Dineen! 2027 Winery here in Niagara sent us a case of their finest, delivered door to door. By helping these companies now, we ensure that they will still be there for us when the crisis ends.

Look for Inspiration.  Take inspiration from those who are using their resources to address the crisis.  Some of our hotel clients have offered up their rooms to help the medical community.  That is both heart-warming and inspirational. In Buffalo, just 20 miles from here, Tesla, the electric car manufacturer is using car parts to design a ventilator for hospital deployment.  They are in final testing of their innovation and can soon re-purpose their Buffalo facility to pump out life-saving equipment – innovated here in North America, built in North America, saving the people of North America.

Do Something Useful.  The news can be overwhelmingly negative and sensationalistic.  So, distract yourself from it and do something useful. Remember that project you got half-done in your house or yard?  Take a time-out from reading or watching the news and wrap up that overdue task instead. The positive feeling of completion will counter-balance the negativity of the news.  My 10 year old son got it in his head to re-assemble our treadmill on the weekend. The unit had been taken apart 2 years ago with parts scattered in 3 different locations. The main motorized section of the unit had been subjected to rain and snow.  I thought it was likely hopeless. He did not. Kudos to HIM! We now have a fully operational exercise machine, cleaned up and working as good as new. The day before that, my 7 year old and 12 year old sons helped me to open a wall and fix a sliding door that had fallen off its track INSIDE the wall.  It’s very satisfying to have that problem solved and to have passed the time in a productive way, not indulging the negativity of the news. Control the things you can control. Follow the wisdom of our elders and the enthusiasm of our youth.

Plan For The Future.  We are working on fixing some problems in our company systems that have caused us trouble in the past.  Upgrades that were put off. Coding that was inefficient. I encourage you to do likewise: Look for a way to re-tool your own systems and to be ready for business to return full-steam.  We’ll be there for you.  Please be there for us.

If we can be of any assistance in your business re-tooling or upgrades, please do not hesitate to call on us.  We are here to do our part. We are competent and focussed and positive.

One final note from my mom, Libby, which formed the eulogy after her life well-lived:

May you have the strength to change what you can.

May you have the grace to accept what you cannot change.

May you have the wisdom to know the difference.

Stay well.  Look out for one another.

Paul Tomori