When reports were first coming from China in early January regarding the coronavirus, Dave Gunderson, vice president of 3M’s Automotive Aftermarket Division (AAD), said the company saw the writing on the wall.
Having been through previous pandemics, such as SARs, 3M executives realized the need to take action.
“Every day at 3M, we think about improving lives,” said Gunderson. “Those of us working in the automotive aftermarket have been thinking about ways to support collision repairers during the pandemic.”
Operating in more than 240 countries, the company manufactures and sells 52,000 different products and has more than 96,000 employees.
Autobody News recently talked to Gunderson about the state of the industry during COVID-19 and what 3M has been doing over these past few months to show its support.
“We realized that we needed a new operating rhythm and it had to be simple, yet effective,” said Gunderson. “It came down to three overarching guidelines: people, prioritization and rebound.”
How has 3M protected people during the COVID-19 restrictions?
First and foremost, the top priority is to make sure that our teams and customers are staying safe. We have stay informed about the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO.)
We took action to limit any exposure and ensure our teams have the right measures in place. We also converted all of our support to be handled remotely. Customer support is key for us, but we need to do it in the safest possible way.
Since June 4, we started bringing 3M employees back to the 3M Center campus who aren’t able to physically do their jobs from home. We also created new rules and training for employees.