First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Robin Williams: We are doing as well as can be expected. Like many others, we miss having more social events and going to our favorite restaurants. We are fortunate that most of our team was already working remotely, so we did not have to change much of our working structure.
Tell us about you, your career, how you Joined CashOne.
Robin Williams: I started with CashOne around 2009 and took over more responsibilities as we grew. Today, I am the General Manager and oversee many of the day-to-day activities of the business. I was previously an office manager for a couple of different businesses.
How does CashOne innovate?
Robin Williams: Our industry has a lot of oversight at the federal and state levels, and we use as much automation and technology as we can. We do this both for our customers and maintain best practices while complying with all the regulations we are subject to. We work with our buyers to use fast and secure data transmissions so customers can get rapid answers to their inquiries.
The business is always changing and become more “techie,” so we have to be on our toes at all times and always looking for ways to innovate and improve.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Robin Williams: The first few months of the pandemic were chaotic and really killed our business. We lost money for several months. Our crisis planning before COVID is a principal reason we survived. We had already developed contingency plans for CashOne, including having working capital for 9 months set aside…and we are glad we did. It enabled us to weather the storm, and as things started to improve, so did our business. We are doing well now, although not up to the levels pre-pandemic.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Robin Williams: Well, it is always difficult when you do not know what will happen next, and the experts are changing forecasts and information as they learn more. It becomes a bit of a guessing game on our part. But our pre-pandemic crisis planning for CashOne was key to our survival. And, we use the same processes as we move forward to plan for best and worst-case scenarios.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety? How do you project yourself and CashOne in the future?
Robin Williams: We all do our best to stay in the moment and not panic. By staying as calm as possible, we can keep clear heads and find solutions to almost any problem. Of course, everyone on the team needs their own outlets to relieve stress. Personally, I like to take long walks to relax and clear my head. It works for me, but everyone has to have an outlet that is best for them.
We think CashOne still has a solid future and will recover just as our country does. It may be mid-2021 before this happens, but we hope sooner rather than later.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Robin Williams: Our competitors are companies that vary from small to large. We actually try to ignore our competition and focus on our own positioning in the marketplace. We are a niche company and do not try to compete with big companies. CashOne is known for outstandingly consistent quality, and our goal is to deliver on that vision every day.
Your final thoughts?
COVID-19 has made it hard for millions of Americans, and so many small businesses have been crushed by it, especially in the hospitality industry. We certainly feel for them and their employees. It will take years for that industry to recover. But when tough times hit, there are often hidden opportunities or even new ones that appear. We are optimistic that times will improve, and those that are suffering will see better times.