I first met Lois Ritarossi more than 20 years ago when she lived in Massachusetts. She was an account executive for Output Technologies (before they were acquired by DST Systems) and I was designing mutual fund statements for one of her clients. It seems like yesterday, but my gray hairs tell me otherwise. In addition to developing some serious consulting chops since then, Lois has also become a go-to foodie source for restaurant recommendations.
What can you tell us about this picture?
Being at home this much seemed like a great time to break out some of the old family recipes. Fresh pasta is so much better than the dry kind.
Where is home?
Falls Church VA, outside of Washington DC
How much do you work from home when there’s not a pandemic?
50% home, 50% traveling.
Days at home since March 1?
I arrived home March 5th from my last conference, INg and stayed put after that.
What are you doing to keep spirits up?
Finding small distractions, seeing beautiful spring flowers in bloom, cuddling with my dog, joking with my husband. Connecting with positive friends and colleagues for inspiration. And Eating! (Not such a good idea.) Family chat calls by /zoom have really helped us stay connected and see each other – and even my parents could figure out Zoom without much technical support.
What are your favorite stories of people/companies helping others during the pandemic?
- A landlord told a friend of a friend – April was rent free.
- I went to my local farmer’s market and there was confusion about if the market was allowed to be open or not on 3/21. The flower guy gave me flowers for free.
- Honeywell contacted the government and is switching a plant in RI to begin manufacturing masks.
- Teachers teaching teachers how to teach using virtual technology.
What are your top tips for printing companies in managing through the pandemic?
- Create a robust communications plan for employees, customers and vendors.
- Help customers remain calm and inform them of whether or not your organization has been deemed “essential business” and how ongoing work may be affected.
- Be open to creative ideas from staff and encourage employees to think of new ways to get work done.
- Use social media intelligently.
- Seek help with modifications to business continuity plans and recovery strategies if needed.
What do you think OEMs can/should do to help their customers?
- Communicate how they will continue to provide support during uncertain times.
- Be flexible and creative with services and supplies.
- Be willing to share technical resources that can support customers who need to make changes for remote access.
Thanks for sharing, Lois.