Changing Times Call For a Change in Business

Holly Bonner

As the coronavirus outbreak continues to spread across the states, many Americans are choosing to play it safe, pressing pause on their everyday lives to live and work from home. In East Tennessee, employees are experiencing their first week in quarantine.

While working in your pajamas seems fun at first, there are things you are bound to miss about your nine-to-five routine. Like the quaint cafe across from your office with your usual morning pick-me-up. Or the sandwich shop on the corner with the friendliest employees.

They miss you too.

Small businesses everywhere are dealing with the economic ramifications of the coronavirus. But the good news is these businesses are getting creative with how they are adapting to the current situation to better serve their customers.

And even better news? Our community is getting creative with how we are trying to support these small businesses in the midst of a national emergency. From buying gift cards to leaving generous tips, people are lending a hand to their favorite mom and pop shops.

Two local businesses working with the community’s best interest in mind are Mindy B’s Deli and Peet’s Coffee.

Mindy B’s Deli

This week, Mindy’s B’s Deli launched Frontline Meals, a new online ordering service allowing people to donate lunch to hospital workers, first responders, police and firemen. From their website, people can go to ChowNow and click the specials tab to order a meal. Each box includes a sandwich, side, dessert and bottle of water that will be delivered somewhere in need.

Along with Frontline Meals, Mindy B’s also offers its regular online ordering and delivery service. Customers can order online and pickup in-store using ChowNow.

But if you don’t want to come to them, they’ll will come to you. Dinner Delivery now allows Mindy B’s to serve you from your front door.

Mindy B’s still offers dine-in services, but they are taking precautions to encourage social distancing like the CDC recommends. Temporarily, the deli has minimized their seating capacity to keep both their employees and customers safe.

Peet’s Coffee

There are a few things Americans can live without — coffee is not one of them. And thanks to Peet’s Coffee we don’t have to.

Following the guidance of the CDC and other governmental agencies, Peet’s Coffee is also temporarily changing the way they operate.

Starting now, Peet’s will begin switching to “To Go” service and Mobile Order Ahead. To pick up their coffee in-store, customers can easily download the Peet’s App.

Other changes going into effect include:

  • Seating areas will be closed—keeping space is good right now
  • Milk and sugar are behind the counter and served by a team member, just ask
  • A continued pause on the use of personal cups and bags
  • Restrooms closed for customer use
  • Reducing stores hours at all locations

If you still haven’t gotten your coffee fix, Peet’s Coffee now offers free shipping to people who order coffee directly from their roastery. Order here.

For more ways to help your community from home, read Livability's tips on how to support small businesses and visit NOOGAtoday for a list of other local Chattanooga businesses responding to COVID-19.

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