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Lockdown But Not Out

With COVID-19 affecting nearly every business across the world, everyone at GB Lubricants has had to pull together to ensure the smooth running of operations within the company and supplying oil and lubricants products to its customers.

The sales staff have been heavily affected, working to ensure that products reach customers of all shapes and sizes, which is described by Area Sales Manager Kevin Clark, “Having joined GB Lubricants just before the credit crunch hit in 2008 I never thought businesses would suffer like they did again, but, along came COVID19 and turned our world upside down in a way that no one could ever have imagined. Our normal would be no more, at least for some time to come.”

The biggest change for Kevin came in adapting to go from working on the road every day to working in the comfort of his own home, as he describes: “Having worked in sales for over 20 years and spending almost every day out driving and meeting customers and chasing potential customers face to face during that time, to now finding myself working from home, it certainly has been a change!”

GB Lubricants who are a proven customer driven company took the decision to keep producing and supplying our customers who were still out there working in these strange and challenging times. Kevin explained: “This meant I have had to adapt the way I stay in touch with customers to keep them informed with ongoing changes at the plant, updates on new products and latest information in general. As most people who know me and which my colleagues will testify to, I’m not the greatest when it comes to IT. However, I have managed to keep in touch with the rest of the sales team via Zoom meetings which have helped to keep the spirits up and even enjoyed some online product training webinars. It has also given me time to use our new CRM system which should give the Gateshead sales team some respite from me calling them for customer information so often.”

The last few months have been a big change in day to day life, but the time at home hasn’t been too disruptive for Kevin. As despite the change of not going on the road every day, he has been spending his days on his own, as his wife, an NHS dental nurse and youngest son, a key worker at Morrisons, go off to work leaving him home alone with a radio and a list of customers to contact.

Kevin remains pragmatic and positive about the whole situation and does see the light at the end of the tunnel: “This whole situation has become the new normal, for now! But I look forward to visiting my customers again when it’s safe to do so.”


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