Mike Roer

Connecticut State Guidelines on Reopening.
For the latest information see https:// portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus

Businesses must self-certify that they are properly prepared to reopen and that they will follow required protocols.  Self certify at  https://business.ct.gov/recovery

Free Resources to Help You with Reopening.  
Personal Protective Equipment and Infrared Thermometers
: CBIA and CONNSTEP are distributing free face masks to employers of under 50 at two masks per employee. See  https://www.cbia.com/news/small-business/face-masks-connecticut-small-business-employees/

CBIA, CONNSTEP, and the State of Connecticut announced they are also distributing free thermometers. These are available to companies with 100 employees or less and please limit your request to 1 thermometer per company. Orders will be fulfilled via your town's process for delivering emergency supplies, while supplies last. Find out more here on how to obtain your thermometer.

Staying Safe Together Signage: CBIA and CONNSTEP have also released a workplace poster "Staying Safe Together for Reopening CT" that you can download from 

Additional Recommendations, from Non-government Sources

NYT 5-6-2020 says that spraying-and-wiping in one motion (you know, the way we all do it) is wrong.  It's not the elbow grease, that kills the little buggers, it's the harmful chemicals in the cleaner, and to do their job, they need to sit; from 30-seconds to 10 minutes, depending on the product. Short answer: read the label.  Article.


Specific Industries

SHARED ECONOMY BUSINESSES.  The CT Post offers a prediction in this 5-2-2020 article

"Tourism industry builds customer loyalty...while closed" Article in Hartford Business 5-4-2020

FITNESS INDUSTRY.  "Members of fitness centers and gyms may be required to book times online. The International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association asks gyms to consider how they might limit fitness class size, restrict members from congregating or implement strict cleaning policies."   Hartford Courant  article 5-3-2020

RETAIL. Reopening will mean re-educating shoppers to new realities such as ...
  • one-way aisles (to accommodate social distancing)
  • point-of-sale plexiglass shields at checkout stations and
  • face coverings for both employees and shoppers.
RESTAURANTS.  We have more questions than answers right now, such as, will diners submit to temperature checks? At a popular restaurant in Hong Kong, that is open, Diners have their temperatures checked, without complaint (realizing it is to keep everyone safe).  Or, does air-conditioning spread the virus?  How do you keep restrooms sanitized and uncrowded?  How to rewrite a menu so cooks stay safe in tight confines of kitchen?  Nevertheless, some suggestions (albeit based more on ether buzz and common sense than science):
  • Disposable paper menus.  
  • No waiting in the bar for a table. Figure out a way for people to wait outside, or page their phone when their table is ready
  • More al fresco dining.  New Haven and New London may close off some streets and reduce restrictions on use of sidewalks. Business New Haven 5-7-2020      al fresco dining.jpg   Eating al fresco in Berlin.
  • No salad bars
  • Space tables 6 feet apart (the safe distance is really not certain, but there should be some more definitive data from health scientists.)  THIS WILL OBVIOUSLY CUT INTO REVENUE and PROFITS (assume 50% revenue decline in your planning) and will reduce TIPS for wait staff.
  • Consider time shifting, as factories have done for years.  I'm sure you've already thought of offering discounts for people who will come before six or after eight.  If you have French clientele they will probably pay you a premium to dine after nine.
  • No parties of more than 4.
  • Waiters and diners wear masks. No exceptions.  Patrons may leave off to eat/drink. One restaurant in Hong Kong provides a mask for each guest and a bag to hold it when not in use (to prevent it from depositing or picking up germs from the table).
  • Use disposable pens for diners to sign checks, or sterilize pens after each use, or ask diners to bring their own; or better yet, toss the old-fashioned paper. Send the bill to their phone or include in the menu a url where patrons can view and pay their bill online.  Still better, show the patron their bill on a tablet and give them a sterilized stylus to add tip and sign. Make the stylus a souvenir swizzle stick. 
  • Between seatings, clean and sanitize table condiments, digital ordering devices, check presenters, self-service areas, tabletops, and common touch areas.  
  • Use rolled silverware and eliminate table presets.
  • Remove lemons and unwrapped straws from self service drink stations.
  • Install plexiglas dividers between tables or sections of communal tables. See photo below

A 10-page Reopening Guide may be downloaded from the National Restaurant Association website.
(Heads-up: the regs you will receive from local, state and federal authorities will not arrive until after you have remodeled your restaurant, will be ambiguous and contradictory. So talk to other chefs, suppliers, and the NRA and you'll figure it out together.  If you learn anything, please post it hear. Good luck.)
Divider 27236198-8221339-Plexiglass_pictured_in_restaurant_is_hoped_to.jpg  A restaurant in Rome. See more dividers below under "Office"

COLLEGES.  See what colleges are planning (hoping) for Fall here.

OFFICES. Protective dividers may be the order of the day.  There are a number of protective dividers that are simple, attractive, affordable, and ready to ship.  Here are a few from ShopPopDisplays.com,
from left to right, $220, $170, $150
Divider $219 at ShopPopDisplays.com.png  Divider Desk shield at SPD $170.png  Divider at SPD $149.png
The Harvard Business Review, May 21, 2020 offers
Practices for Creating Safe Workplaces

1.  Instruct employees that when anyone sees anyone violate safe practices, they are to remind them of proper protocol with a polite, “Please.” For example, “Please wear a mask when you’re in the office.”

Leaders must be instructed that when they’re reminded of a safety guideline, there is only one permissible response: an immediate “Thank you” followed by compliance. Period.

Spectrum Health in West Michigan worked for months to encourage caregivers to issue reminders. When they asked reminder recipients to say thank you and comply, hand hygiene practice improved by more than 60% within a matter of weeks. When doctors were trained to “show gratitude, not attitude,” reminding became a low-risk norm rather than a terrifying ordeal.

2.  Hold a Covid boot camp when you return to the office,  to break down old patterns and introduce new ones. 

3. Perform daily rounds. As the saying goes, “you don’t get what you expect, you get what you inspect.” Walk the work area and observe the degree to which proper behavior is being practiced, every day for the first 30 days.

Keep score publicly. Leaders should then post the rounding scores publicly, every day. Above the score they can place a large circle with colors denoting the organization’s level of compliance: Green = 95%+. Yellow = 80-90%. Red = <80%. They must commit to post the results no matter what they are and make sure they are visible to clients and customers. Embarrassment is a powerful motivator for improvement.


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