The rollout of the requirement of vaccine passports is bad news for small
businesses who have already faced the brunt of covid 19 restrictions and
lockdowns worldwide. This new requirement that people trying to buy products
or services from establishments like gyms, restaurants, bars, airlines, tourist
attractions and concerts are going to have to give proof of vaccination is a
troubling development for businesses who are already struggling. The challenge
that businesses are going to face include:
Loss of Sales: in most locations 60-80% of populations have been vaccinated, this
leaves 20-40% of the customer base of most businesses where people have
chosen for health, safety, trust, religious or other reasons, not to take the vaccine
medications. The government requirement of a vaccine passport to now access
products or services is going to restrict the number of people who will be able to
purchase from your business. If your customer base has just dropped by 20-40%
you can bet that your sales are going to drop as well.
Loss of Profitability: A study by the info credit group in 2020 found that when
sales drop by 25%, 81% of companies show net loss. The reality is that when
companies are only marginally profitable, and research from the NFIB has shown
that before the pandemic upwards of 50-60% of small business fell into this
category, losses to customer base are going to have a significant affect on the
bottom line. Small business owners cannot afford another week, month or year
Loss of Staffing: The service industry is experiencing significant difficulty in
attracting and retaining workers in light of the sector’s inability to guarantee work
in an environment that is constantly facing lockdowns and restrictions. While a
percentage of business owners may feel that vaccine passports will protect their
staff from customers, customers are going to demand that staff prove their
vaccinations as well. We have already seen that businesses that have forced
vaccination of all their employees have faced serious losses of employee talent.
Forbes recently reported that as many as 33% of hospital workers including
nurses and physicians have refused to become vaccinated. We shouldn’t be
surprised that when forced to vaccinate against their wishes people will leave
Enforcement requirements: So, who does government think is going to enforce
vaccine passports? In some jurisdictions, police forces have already asked for
more money if they are going to be required to help with vaccine passport
enforcement. Are businesses now expected to burden an already hard-working
staff by adding another rigorous task to their customer interactions? At what
cost? Monitoring vaccine passports in a business is going to take time and time is
money. The cost of monitoring is going to add additional costs that small
businesses neither want nor can afford.
Outraged customers: Guess what is going to happen when some of your regular
customers can no longer use your products or services because you are denying
them entry? Not only are businesses going to face outraged customers, many are
going to risk losing these customers forever. Pro-vaccine passport government
officials don’t seem to understand that businesses spend considerable money,
effort and energy in attracting new customers. The lifetime value of customers is
often thousands of dollars. Customers who are upset are going to spend their
money elsewhere, and businesses that are forced to refuse their money
are going to have to find ways of dealing with angry customers.
Increased Stress: Drama in the workforce places unneeded stress on employees
and owners of small businesses. The division that is being created by the
implementation of vaccination passports is not only affecting customers but the
mental health of anyone who is trying to take care of customers. With burnout
levels of business leaders and their employees reaching all time high levels, the
addition of vaccine passports is just one more stressor that people don’t need
Whether you believe in the value of these vaccines or not, the requirements of
vaccine passports do not make sense on many levels. Where do these vaccine
passports stop? Will we see
People demanding to see the Hepatitis A, B, and C vaccines for all restaurant staff?
Customers asking to see food safe or bar tending certification for all employees in an establishment?
Will employers be able to now access their full medical history of all their staff?
Will people be prevented from applying for jobs based on their health or medications?
How long will people be restricted from travel based on their refusal to medicate in certain ways?
The slippery slope of vaccine passports will have serious long-term effects on
businesses and their owners. Unfortunately, government officials who have long
term job security and high salaries are not going to be affected by their decisions
to enforce vaccine passports to the extent of small business owners and their
employees. When vaccine passports become the norm, consumers like you and
me are going to see small business closures continue to become commonplace
instead of the exception, which is bad news for all of us!
Dave Fuller, MBA, is an Award-Winning Business Coach who is the author of the
book “Profit Yourself Healthy”, Dave lives in lives in Prince George, B.C. Disagree with this article? Email email@example.com