March 26, 2020

COVID-19: Supporting our employees and community at large

Here is a memo that I sent to AM International group employees today.

Dear colleagues,

Your health and safety is our top priority as the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt around the world. As the situation continues to evolve, I want to assure each one of you that we will tide over this together. As a corporation with footprints across three continents, we must conduct ourselves with responsibility, maturity and determination at this time of a global health emergency.

At AM International, the values we’ve always stood by make it imperative that we take care of our people. Apart from the steps we’re taking across our businesses to adhere to local country guidelines and implement safety practices, I encourage each one of you to follow the below measures:

Follow safety guidelines and co-operate with authorities

Everyone should stay informed on what is happening in their area and follow safety guidelines.

As per various news reports, it is a reality that more and more people will get infected with COVID-19. The good news is that the majority will be able to recover. Often, self-quarantine is a safe method. Seek medical advice at the earliest if you experience any symptoms and inform the authorities.

The key is to help flatten the disease spread curve and reduce the pressure on the healthcare system. Currently, certain countries have implemented lockdowns to slow the spread of the disease. Don’t act in haste or do anything that is against the current advisory. Follow the rules and regulations set out by your government or health regulators.

Exercise hygiene, physical distancing and self-restraint

A time like this is a reminder that we all need to stand together to overcome challenges. Self-discipline and restraint is the key. As responsible citizens, we should ensure that simple habits like regular washing of hands with soap, physical distancing not just social distancing, cutting down on unnecessary travel, and avoiding social gatherings are followed strictly.

We need to practise digital distancing too. Do not fall for myths circulating on social media. Share messages only if they are from a verified source. Avoid forwarding messages that are unverified and untrue, as it only spreads misinformation. There is no need to panic. What we need to do is prepare and raise awareness of simple lifestyle habits that each one of us can take to prevent the spread of the disease.

Self-discipline and restraint is the key.

According to my assessment, the current situation may continue for some time until successful mitigation methods get implemented, and every business should be prepared to stay the course. As a leader to over 3000+ employees and their families, I alongside my leadership team feel a tremendous sense of responsibility in working towards tiding over this situation with minimum disruption. Similarly, each one of us should work towards ensuring that our stakeholders are least inconvenienced.

Our conduct, since the past decade, of building and running businesses sustainably, will help us wade through the crisis in a planned and disciplined manner. We are committed to making decisions which are in the best interest of our people and our communities. Let us stay focused and agile to adapt to the changing environment alongside being financially prudent to brace for an unpredictable future.

Each one of us should take care of ourselves and our families, our fellow employees and their families and in turn, take care of our respective communities. As good citizens, I would again request you to follow government announcements and hygiene practices strictly. Our self-discipline will help lessen the burden on the public healthcare system. And, that in turn will help somebody with more critical needs avail medical treatment.

Let's stay focused, calm and mindful of the world around us. This too shall pass if we remain alert and act responsibly.

Take care and stay safe,

Ashwin Muthiah

Chairman, AM International