Not long ago, associations and chambers were excited about the start of a new decade. Calendars were set and budgets approved for a great year.

Then COVID-19 barged in uninvited, becoming the loudest voice in the room. Our boards had to stay away from in-person meetings, events were cancelled, and staff worked from home. Life as we know it became chaotic. The health of our organizations, businesses and communities suffered.

The virus is rude, crude, and unwelcome. It is changing how we live personally, professionally, and emotionally. However, many of the changes are resulting in useful adaptations and improvements.

Curses

Covid is the new F-word. WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH. For weeks it has driven our operations and been on our mind 24-7. As springtime turns to summer, we want to replace the doom with recovery, success and rebound for everybody.

I encourage others to avoid the word. At this point it is regurgitation. When a conversation, seminar or report starts with COVID-19 I think it represents evil and is averse to the energy we need for recovery.

Instead of focusing on the virus, focus on opportunities. Instead of grief and mortality, spread a positive message, banishing the cursed word.

Associations and chambers are well positioned to connect members to resources, share good ideas, and offer support. Now more than ever we should be the relevant and the indispensable partner to business and the community.

Let this be our new mantra, “From today forward we will focus on renewal, recharge, and regrowth. We will use the good deeds of our organizations and our members to build a stronger community.”

The COVID-19 welcome mat has been removed. We are replacing the noisy, chaotic situation with solutions. Add this virus to the list of four-letter swear words that should be banned from communication.