Category: Uncategorized

Lake County is Open for Business

Lake County businesses have faced many trials during the COVID-19 pandemic, and they have risen to the challenge, developing innovative new ways to engage and safely serve their customers. Never have we seen such ingenuity, powered by technological advances and sheer creativity.

Restaurants have embraced contactless service, online ordering, delivery, and pickup options, outdoor seating, and budget-conscious family-style menus. Indoors, they have created more space between tables, reduced seating capacity and minimized shared surfaces. Sanitizing stations and touchless payment options are more available than ever.

Retail businesses have pivoted. Local distilleries are producing hand sanitizer. Signage companies are creating new products to help promote businesses. Boutiques are adding online inventory to bolster sales. Many businesses have created new drive-throughs, walk-up windows, and curbside options for customers to safely pick up goods from the comfort of their cars. Special senior hours now accommodate early visits to the grocery store, and some grocers monitor entrances to spread out foot traffic. Salons check their customers’ temperatures and have installed plexiglass barriers to further ensure safety. Shoe stores offer delivery and try-at-home options. Many car dealerships are offering phone service as well as test drives, delivery, and home drop-offs. In all cases, enhanced cleaning practices help keep our community safe.

Hotels have also implemented new sanitization procedures, with many “sealing” rooms after cleaning to ensure safety. We have seen hotels partner with cleaning product manufacturers and medical organizations, exploring electrostatic and UV light cleaning technologies. One resort is offering e-learning classrooms where children can be supervised while parents can relax. Our renowned entertainment venues have also adjusted to meet shifting consumer preferences. Outdoor and virtual concerts and events abound, and drive-in movies are no longer a thing of the past.

Medical offices have transformed operations as well, with new advance questionnaires, intake forms, temperature checks, enhanced cleaning practices, drive-through vaccine clinics and telehealth services for routine appointments. No matter the need or the season, Lake County residents will find the business community is open and ready to serve. Behind the scenes, partners in the Lake County Workforce Ecosystem—Lake County Partners, Lake County Workforce Development, the College of Lake County and others—are committed to working together to ensure businesses have the resources they need to safely operate and meet your needs.

Your One-Stop-Shop for Business

I’m excited that my inaugural blog post coincides with the launch of Lake County Partners’ new website. We began work on the site at the beginning of the year, with no real understanding of the many COVID-19 related changes to come over the course of a few short months. There’s no question that we’re in a different world now, and we’ve all had to quickly adapt to the circumstances and find new ways of doing business. Lake County has certainly risen to the occasion.

Through our partnerships at the state and local levels, relationships with our friends in real estate and finance, and close involvement in Lake County’s strong life sciences and advanced manufacturing businesses, we have seen the rollout of new programs, financing opportunities, and life-saving technology on a scale and at a speed never before seen. Side by side, we have steadily walked through phases while navigating new guidelines and preparing for what the future holds.

Since the onset of the epidemic, we have hosted countless webinars and municipal briefings, issued business alerts, coordinated grant programs, assembled recovery resources, connected stakeholders and pushed information out across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. Our unique role as the connector between the public and private sectors is perhaps more important than ever before. We have seen firsthand the importance of having a one-stop shop for valuable information on doing business in Lake County, and we hope that this new website is exactly that. We invite you to explore it—if you’re an existing business, it’s a great place to rediscover Lake County and ignite your plans to grow. If you’re new to the area, you’ll quickly see why life is better here, inside and out of the office. Regardless of your needs, you’ve come to the right place, and we look forward to connecting and helping to drive your business forward.