People around the world are adjusting to a new, uncertain normal as the coronavirus pandemic upends lives. Automakers are no different, shutting down factories and sending employees home to work in isolation. But work still needs to be done, and that's no different at Bugatti where company president Stephan Winkelmann has been doing his duties from home, too. Bugatti published his general schedule, highlighting a typical day for Winkelmann during this lockdown because "Bugatti never stands still."
Winkelmann starts his day with a 7 a.m. wakeup call, followed by breakfast and catching up on the news. By 8:30, he's checking emails and hosting the first of several meetings, which starts with the Executive Board. What follows is more conference calls, touching base with other Bugatti departments – sales, design, marketing, and development. Lunch is at noon with some TV news and emails, but by 2 p.m., Winkelmann is hosting more phone conferences and checking emails.
Winkelmann concludes his day with an hour run – broken up by exercises. The evening is when Winkelmann makes some private phone calls, which include his mother, and reading. "For me, the only benefit of the lockdown is that I have more time to read in the evenings." Usually, he reads one non-fiction and one fiction book, though right now he's reading two non-fiction books.
While Winkelmann and many of Bugatti's are working from home, Winkelmann does visit the company's headquarters at least twice a week. There are still a small number of employees who must go into work, and Winkelmann likes to visit to stay up to date on what's happening there. Bugatti did shutter production to help slow the spread of the virus, though work continues in both development and design.
This will be the norm for the foreseeable future as automakers, employees, and people around the world adjust to this new, uncertain normal. This has put a strain on automakers that'll likely see sales falter in the coming months, as many have stepped up to help their employees, customers, and communities in various ways.