Coping in the Crisis - The Coronavirus Isolation Diary

Day 7 of 14John Gourd, Chief Executive Officer at Cambridge Network, reflects on life in the New Reality.

Cambridge scene in spring

Dear all,

Today I want to give you a quick update on how the Cambridge Network is reacting to the events and challenges that we are currently facing.

First and foremost, I hope that you and your families are well. We are working hard behind the scenes to support local businesses and the community at large and this is how we are adapting:

Like so many other companies, we have moved out of our offices at the Hauser Forum and are now working from home. Whilst this took some adjustment, the team has responded well and we are co-ordinating with each other on a daily basis to ensure that we are still delivering services and adding value for our members.

Our members are keeping us busy as we keep our core services in place. The requirement to keep people and businesses connected is probably more important in these times and the challenge is to move our services online, while self-isolation is in place. This is going well and we started to roll out a series of free online seminars last week; meanwhile, our Learning and Development trainers are all working hard to convert their courses to online platforms. I think it is so important that we try and take some positives from these challenging times and the opportunity to focus on self-development might just be one of these.

We are collating and publishing a large amount of useful information on our website – provided by our members and other agencies.

We are helping make connections between our members and the organisations that require solutions to the new technical challenges the nation is facing (ventilators, testing kits, PPE, etc).

We quickly took the strategic decision to make our services available to the wider Cambridge ecosystem (to members and non-members alike) and this has proven to be very important in the current situation – we all want to ensure that the economy during, and at the end of, this period is as healthy as it can be. An example of this is the work that we are undertaking to connect those businesses that are short of resource with people who have, unfortunately, lost their positions due to the closure of businesses.

Finally, we have continued to work with Government and local authorities to ensure that they get very rapid assistance to people in vulnerable businesses.

We will commit to continue to develop relevant services that help the wider community over the next few weeks and months.

Please let me know if you see an opportunity for the Network to utilise its loyal membership, its reach and its expertise.

Please look after each other and stay safe.

Best regards