Should you send employees back to work as quickly as possible? Or should you err on the side of safety and continue to keep them home?
Billionaire Mark Cuban urges companies to think beyond the short-term revenue gains of bringing employees back to work. "Not only is it a safety issue, it's a business issue," he warned companies when he recently appeared as a guest on a CNBC segment. "There's no reason to rush this."
How you act now will define your brand for decades.
While your bottom line is hurting, you may be eager to throw your doors open as quickly as possible. But Cuban stresses that you carefully consider the business risk of putting profits over people.
The decisions you make now will directly affect the safety and potential health of your employees. Do you want to develop a reputation as the employer that prioritized stakeholder demands over taking care of the people who make and sell your goods?
"How companies respond to that very question is going to define their brand for decades," says Cuban. During the NBA stoppage, Cuban said he will continue to pay hourly arena workers through the end of March.
It's good business to take care of your employees.
Doing everything you can do to protect your employees in the middle of a still-unfolding pandemic is more than just the right thing to do. Cuban says it's also a smart business decision.
Consider two scenarios. Which brand do you think customers will be more likely to pick in the future?
In scenario one, you bring employees back to work as soon as government restrictions loosen. An employee brings the virus to work, potentially spreading it to others in the workplace. In scenario two, you stay on the safe side and remain closed. Your employees remain healthy and are more loyal once it's deemed safe to open again.
Cuban says he'd rather err on the side of caution. "I'm not going to tell people to go to work when I'm uncertain."