COVID-19 and Small Business

Starting a business in 2020: Harnessing opportunities during a global pandemic

Emily Thomas
Written by Emily Thomas

The 202020/21 financial year may be the year for small businesses to flourish. When conditions are difficult, SMEs can often be relied on to exhibit the resiliency and adaptability to  pivot and react quickly. With various restrictions impacting operations,  and capital not being tied up in office space business owners who can think outside the box will be uniquely equipped to cope with these unprecedented times.

This pandemic has presented opportunities to focus on a circle of established contacts and building strong relationships. Now is a great time for small businesses to listen to customers and identify new areas for growth.

Keeping a remote workforce together

Working from home (WFH) is now the norm across a variety of sectors, making internal communications strategies more important than ever. How do you keep staff well informed and involved in decisions when they’re not coming into the office and the usual work interaction is curtailed? How can employees stay motivated and engaged with the stress and uncertainty of the pandemic happening in the background?

Small businesses that have managed to keep up connections between their employees have made WFH easier for their employees. They have used creative means to stay in contact from video conference catch ups and weekly newsletters to virtual trivia nights and exercise routines posted to the intranet. Others have introduced morning mindfulness sessions within teams. Weekly check-ins are a must, whether they occur via video-conferencing or over the phone. Small business owners should ensure that their employees feel confident and empowered to continue working.

Prioritising transparency and flexibility

Stakeholder communication is more important than ever. All business leaders need to ensure that they are upfront with existing and new clients regarding their capacity to deliver work under WFH conditions. Businesses who have fared well in 2020 have prioritised flexibility and recognised the multi-faceted pressures that people may be facing during this time.

Ensuring that lines of communications remain open, processes remain transparent and expectations are set well ahead of time, will help to guarantee healthy working relationships with clients.

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About the author

Emily Thomas

Emily Thomas

Emily Thomas began Giraffe Consulting to create the kind of positive company culture she wanted to work in. Giraffe is a communications and stakeholder management firm, working with a range of organisations across sectors. Emily has a decade of experience working in communications and media. You can connect with Emily on LinkedIn here.

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