Regarding COVID-19, Southwestern Advantage has taken extra steps to protect the safety and well-being of our staff, sales leaders, college and university students who sell Southwestern Global Academy and the families they serve.
Every business in the country is affected in some way, and we are no different. We have been following CDC, Federal, and local government guidelines to protect those with connections or business interests of any and all types. This is our top priority. Despite all the nation (and world) has been through for the last several months, we’ve always believed there is an important line between thoughtful, constructive actions and fear-based paralysis. We have moved from Phase 1 of our summer sales and leadership program – done virtually using Zoom – to Phase 2 in which students have resumed serving families by going door-to-door in counties, cities, and municipalities that have re-opened for retail business and are allowing us to join their efforts.
We believe that with schools being closed all across the nation, the educational resources and support that the young men and women in our program provide to families is more essential than it’s ever been. We applaud those who have chosen to spend this historic season serving the educational needs of families. The hundreds of young American men and women who participate come from over 100 institutions across the U.S. deserve a chance to have an experiential education, gain life skills, earn college credit hours, and help offset their educational expenses. We’re proud to be associated with them.
Applicable Safety Measures & Precautions
Throughout our 152-year history of this program, we have worked to ensure the safety of all involved. To this end, the following specific measures have been taken and continue as part of this summer’s standard operating procedures:
In adapting to the situation presented by the virus, all of the students participated in a 2 to 3 week time period of quarantined virtual training and sales. They were placed in Airbnbs in their home states with only a few other program participants. During this time, their temperatures were checked daily and interaction with others was limited. Masks, hand sanitizer and frequent hand-washing was encouraged.
Students traveled with their roommates to Williamson County, TN for sales training. Although the county had reopened, students were still separated into multiple hotels, wore masks, and practiced social distancing.
Each student has been issued 3 reusable masks to be worn during training and throughout the summer (or as requested by any homeowner/family they visit). The masks have our company logo on them for identification.
All student participants are living either with a local host family that has space for social distancing, or are in an Airbnb that accommodates for social distancing.
Students have been trained to practice social distancing by maintaining a six feet space between them and any prospect or customer, asking each family if they prefer the visit to remain outdoors.
Students are having their temperatures taken daily, many times twice daily, to keep record of any abnormalities that would indicate the need for testing.
Students are trained to maintain possession of their demonstration materials.
Students accept touch-free payment methods.
Students are trained to remind families, particularly children, of the importance of covering coughs and sneezes and to wash your hands regularly.
Students are asked to check in with the local police or Sheriff’s Department prior to starting their business. They should display necessary permits (if applicable or required) and identification as they work.
Sales Leaders with Southwestern Advantage are checking in daily with students to monitor their health, wellness, and continued safety and best-practices training.
Customers have the option of having their order shipped directly to their home rather than having the student personally deliver the products.
It is important to note: we have had no cases of COVID-19 within our management and support teams or the 700+ US college and university students who have chosen to participate in the program in 2020.
Just like our leaders in government (Federal and local), we do not know how this pandemic will look short-term or long-term. As a company, we continue to be a responsible corporate citizen and follow all CDC, Federal, and local guidelines to protect everyone. In the months ahead, we will continue to observe the state of the virus and adjust accordingly.
There are urgent needs for at-home education for families across the nation. As we transition back to a similar version of our traditional processes of selling, we diligently work to provide a safe environment to build skills and character in young people and serve the families who purchase our products. We thank the students, parents, customers, and community leaders who have shared in our problem-solving mentality with an attitude of finding a way.
The Southwestern Global Academy products are needed more than ever in households across America. The lessons of self-reliance and resilience our program has taught for over a century-and-a-half are also needed more than ever by the young people who participate in our program.
Please visit the CDC’s website for the most current information and guidelines about COVID-19.