Throughout the 80s and 90s, I worked as a traveling salesperson. For years, I’d fly out on Monday and return home on Friday, working my way from the western 14 states across America. In many ways, I loved being a salesperson. Flying was easy back then.
As my career grew, so did my ability to stay at great hotels and rent great cars. At the time, Hertz was the company to rent from. They were the top of the line, the premier car rental company, and I was proud to earn my right to rent a Hertz car.
How times have changed! The Wall Street Journal recently reported that The Hertz Corporation is days away from filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Surely, the dangerous coronavirus is to blame, and this is just one example of the devastating impact it’s having on our economy.
Business schools everywhere are being forced to re-examine what a successful company is. What was once a solid business is on the brink of folding. I read today that United is considering furloughing a quarter of its pilots. This was unthinkable just a few short months ago. 30 million people are out of work, and I truly feel for them and the pain they are going through.
The COVID-19 crisis is shining a whole new light on everything, even something as old and boring as home rentals. Although times are changing in our industry, things are not bad, just different. For the rental market, prices will change, opportunities will change, but the basic need for rentals will maintain.
We are in for a ride, hold on.