It’s an uncertain time for business owners. Social distancing measures required of a pandemic, such as COVID-19, might paint a grim picture for businesses. Yet, it’s time to talk about how you can see this as a pause rather than a full stop.
With this situation forcibly teaching us business resilience lessons, those who can draw out valuable lessons and see the possibilities are the ones primed to get back on track once this is over. So what can you do in the meantime? Study the crisis deeply and see how you can apply the learnings we gathered here.
The way you look at things doesn’t shape the whole outcome, but it does determine how you start handling the situation. According to Harvard Business Review, you should allow yourself to feel the frustration. Then, prepare to handle it by asking yourself: What can I learn from this? What’s the next step that I can work on?
Once you answer these questions, frame the situation so you can deal with it. It cites four ways to do this:
Throughout any frame used, it is useful to focus on the positive, as typical as that sounds. Look at it this way — for example, a situation will give you a 5% chance of failure and a 95% chance of success. A person is more attracted to a situation framed to focus on the success rate.
Those who communicate clearly and surpass customers’ expectations will always increase their brand’s value — even during the pandemic. One example is that of Auntie Anne’s.
Chief Operations Officer Mikkel Paris shared, “Most of our marketing is done on social media. I am very heavily involved in that even if I’m the COO. We use technology to look at demographics in different areas. If we’ll open a store for delivery or take out, we’ll boost for that specific location.”
He goes on to elaborate how he maximizes social media for customer engagement.
“With Facebook and Instagram, we use these very heavily to communicate with our customers. We focused quite a bit on that and we were able to respond, because a lot of customers send us messages regularly asking ‘Are you open here now?’ Or [ask] other clarifications. so we use the technology that we have at hand even from home or remote areas to respond immediately to our customers… The big push for us is to bring our products to the customer. The stores that we opened now for delivery and pick up are doing phenomenally well. Better than we have hoped for. It just goes to show that there really is a market for the delivery of our products.”
Be hands-on in your various communication platforms to help keep your business going. Let your customers feel your presence, even if not physically. Get started by looking into M360 and SMS API services. With these, you can customize, automate, and blast your messages to all your clients.
Use the time to think of creative ways to get your products or services across. Turning to online alternatives is a way that will keep you relevant to your customers. Examples are gyms holding online classes, DIY cooking and artistic demos, or live “concerts” and other performances.
Here, we clearly see how technology opens opportunities for you to reach your market. With all eyes online, you can also use these online videos to introduce new products. Treat potential customers to trial periods and turn them to loyal patrons.
In terms of operations, plan for employing a rotational skeletal workforce if your business needs to be open. For the rest of your staff who are mobilized to work from home, remember that good internet connection is key. Help them prepare an efficient work-from-home setup. Offer prepaid internet kits and computers (or computer loans) to employees.
Also, don’t forget to beef up your website and e-commerce platforms and partnerships. Consider joining online selling groups to reach as wide an audience as possible.
Remote work might not be ideal at first, but you can’t ignore the perks: zero commuting costs, an opportunity for better work-life balance, and increased efficiency when done right.
In a GeekWire interview, Zoom CEO Eric Yuan shares how he thinks the response to the coronavirus outbreak could lead to a significant shift in how people work.
“Given this coronavirus, I think overnight, almost everybody really understood they needed a tool like this,” Yuan said. “This will dramatically change the landscape. I truly believe in the future, everyone will [use] video for remote worker collaboration.”
Don’t let the lockdown keep you from connecting with your co-workers and clients. Maximize online tools available like Google Workspace (previously known as G Suite), conference apps like Zoom, and prepaid internet kits to keep your team connected. Explore new work collaboration platforms that best suit your needs.
This crisis didn’t leave any industry unaffected. How is each one dealing with it? Restaurants and retail shops are utilizing third party delivery services. Finance and banking services have been offering softer payment terms and extensions. Schools, BPO/IT, manufacturing, and logistics companies are working on migrating systems online. Even hotels are offering various rebooking and rewards options to ease off cancellations.
Companies who take different scenarios like pandemics, natural disasters, or political unrest into account will be better prepared next time. What can you incorporate into your own planning?
Meet with your team to see bottlenecks in your supply chain and how you can remedy them. Know what aid you can get from the government and fulfill the requirements. Determine the team members who will be part of the skeletal workforce or work remotely. Explore making use of third-party operators such as delivery services or payment platform, like GCash.
With all that said, take this challenging time as an opportunity to learn new ways to operate your business. With insights from key industry players and case studies from other companies worldwide, we’re here to remind you that you’re not alone. You can keep your business up and running even with limited movement and accessibility during COVID-19.
Globe myBusiness will be with you every step of the way. Schedule a consult with us to learn about how we can help your business get back on track.
HELPFUL PRODUCT INFORMATION:
Send important announcements branded with your company name to employees and customers with M360. More information here.
Enjoy seamless collaboration and communication with your team even when crises keep you apart with Google Workspace (previously known as G Suite). Learn more here.
Coordinate with your employees and address customer queries without issues with UNLI Internet 1899. Click here to know more.
Help the team stay connected and productive from home without the high cost with Globe Business Starter 399 with a FREE Prepaid Kit. Click here to know more.
Send support and salary to your employees via GCash with myBiz Wallet. Click here to know more.
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