It’s good to be with you today. As my last hat offended several of you, I thought I’d go with a more neutral hat this time. I’m glad to have so many of our NAL Team Members back in the plants and offices. Unfortunately we’re not able to bring everyone back and we look forward to when that is possible. As you may know, a number of our long-term employees have begun the process of retiring. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to see most of that group before their time at NAL ends. Regrettably we’ve had to make some very difficult decisions regarding salaried staff. The COVID-19 crisis made it necessary for several unfortunate headcount reductions. I’m hopeful that sales will come back faster than expected and we can call many of those who are impacted back to work soon.
This crisis brought management challenges that no one could have predicted. For the past few months we’ve had to make many major decisions with imperfect information. I think we made some good decisions at times and some bad decisions at others. None of the decisions were intended to negatively impact NAL Team Members, yet I know some did. We regret that result and we’re trying to learn from those mistakes in order to make better decisions going forward.
As we are returning to work, the most noticeable difference is probably having to wear a mask. While a mask does not guarantee COVID protection, we believe they are highly effective and will continue to require that they be worn. Masks are not without discomfort but I believe the benefits outweighs the inconvenience. We’ve had a handful of employees test positive so far and I’m certain those numbers would be far worse if masks were not being worn.
On a positive note we’re starting to see customers ramping up faster than expected. It’s too early to tell if this trend will continue, but it’s a good sign for NAL and our industry. Let’s keep our fingers crossed!
Finally, we’re all under a lot of stress right now with all that’s happening in our society. Now is the time when we really need to come together and support kindness and respect. Once again, thank you for the patience and support you’ve shown me personally. I’ve always been grateful for the time that I’ve had to serve with the NAL team, and I look forward to exiting this crisis together!