The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic is exceptional by any standards. It comes with extreme levels of uncertainty, which is well beyond the experience of business leaders. To spill the bean, COVID-19 will test almost every business leader to their limit.
Fret not if you are one among them, and you own a small business with a dream to achieve bigger. We know how challenging it is to take care of your daily operation in the light of coronavirus pandemic. So, to guide you, we have curated the below checklist of strategies.
1. Clear Work from Home Policies
Employees are asked to work from home as governments have ordered companies to shut down and citizens to self-quarantine. If you are not a well-established firm with sufficient resources, this option may sound challenging in the beginning. However, there are some free tools small business owners can use to interact with the employees and make sure they work on time.
At the same time, employees should follow optimal methods for working from home. Embracing this strategy, will assure your boss that you can work productively and deliver excellent outcome—which in turn safeguards your job.
2. Review Upcoming Travel Plans
Upcoming business travel plans must be reviewed, rescheduled, or even canceled if possible. The critical discussions can be done over the phone or held virtually using various online tools. Today, technology enables us to have a face-to-face conversation with the clients, employees, and stakeholders without needing to meet them in real.
But do not forget to test those tools beforehand. You might have downloaded the right software, but it is also essential to check if it works and familiarize with its operation.
3. Revisit Your Crisis Strategies
Most of the well-run businesses will have a crisis or continuity plan. But in several cases, these generic plans don’t work well in reality. So, it is necessary to revisit such strategies now and tailor it to cope with the particular challenges of COVID-19. Answering the below questions will help your business to a certain extent.
- Do you have enough technology bandwidth to support work from home?
- Will you be able to communicate seamlessly with employees and customers?
- Is it possible to outsource the work if the employees are unable to work or fall sick?
- What are the methods used for data flow during the crisis?
- Is there any specific procedure to update travel advice and policy?
4. Communicate with Customers
It’s not just you; even your customers are fighting against this crisis. So, being transparent about what your brand is facing at present will help you establish a bond with them. Customers can easily connect with your business, if you are able to interact with them using emails and direct dials.
In case, if you stay away from them during this pandemic outbreak, they will undoubtedly value your brand lesser. Therefore, tell them openly about the steps taking by your team to mitigate risk and how you are helping the community.
5. Evaluate Supply Chain Process
Try to understand your supply chain process to identify the potential vulnerabilities in it. It includes evaluating every step, right from the final product, to the supplier of the raw material. For instance, if your company depends on raw material from a country that was severely affected, you can opt for the secondary supply without wasting any time.
Lastly, without fail, draft a new supply chain model that can improve visibility across the end-to-end supply chain, and aids the firm in resisting the shocks.
Bonus Tip: Keep Informed
In addition to the above strategies, small business owners must keep up with the latest developments on coronavirus information and update their plans accordingly. There are several trusted sources of information to get the updates related to COVID-19 includes:
Today’s situation is really all that uncommon. The last epidemic outbreak of SARS in 2003 is believed to have cost US$40 billion; however, the economist says COVID-19 could cost 3 to 4x of it. Although one cannot plan precisely in this circumstance, we can at least have a core, fundamental marketing strategy to guide our decisions. And I hope the above-mentioned procedures will help you with that.
Stay Safe and Happy!
Robert Duke is a Marketing Manager and Spokesperson of Blue Mail Media.