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Top 5 Business Strategies During COVID-19


August 4, 2020
By Shelley Armato

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The rules of business have changed seemingly overnight, and many are struggling to adapt to the new normal of our current reality.

The number of decisions business owners and leaders need to make daily is staggering. How do we communicate with customers? What do we do about projects put on hold? How do we keep our employees safe? What kind of infrastructure do we need to support our remote workers? And of course, the biggest decision of all, what steps must we take to ensure our business survives this crisis?

Being a business owner or company leader requires you to be nimble. But that doesn’t negate the fact that you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed.

The following 5 strategies will help you persevere through any challenge, stay on track and emerge victoriously.

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1. Be tenacious
As a business owner, you likely made the decision to be tenacious long ago. If you hadn’t, you wouldn’t be in the position you are today. Now is the time to double down on your commitment. Times of crisis demand boldness, innovation, and tenacity like no other. If you feel your tenacity wavering, pick a mantra that is powerful and motivating for you and play it on a loop in your mind. Some mantras leaders use are, “never give up,” “tough times don’t last; tough people do,” and “persistence breaks down resistance.”

2. Look to your past challenges and how you overcame them
We’ve all had to overcome challenges in the past. A business failure, a job loss, the death of a loved one; no one’s life is without obstacles. Believe it or not, that’s a good thing: by working through those setbacks, you learned some important skills. Current global crisis facing us are different from anything anyone has experienced in the past, but the skills you’ve honed over the years during other challenges are the same that will get you through the current crisis. Just as skilled cyclists pick themselves up after a wipeout and ride again, so can you if you focus on your existing skills.

3. Get comfortable being uncomfortable
During times of crisis, you will need to try new things—maybe even things you never imagined you’d do. That often means being uncomfortable. For example, many business owners are now doing live videos on social media to stay in front of customers and prospects. They may feel comfortable giving scripted messages to the camera, but talking off-the-cuff, in a casual setting is very different. During any crisis, “business as usual” isn’t enough. Think about new, uncomfortable things you can do to keep your company in your customers’ minds.

4. Reinvent your message
If your sales have dropped or projects have been put on hold, a “wait-and-see” stance is dangerous. You need to stay profitable during the crisis, so you may need to reinvent or reposition your message and your offerings. The key is to locate your client’s pain (which may be very different from what they were trying to address a mere three months ago.) Then, deliver solutions to meet their current needs. Repositioning your offering often requires only a slight pivot, not a 180-degree change. Look at some examples currently in communities across the country; restaurants offering grocery delivery services, distilleries making hand sanitizer, apparel and shoemakers adding facemasks to their product line. You already know how to reposition; you did it when starting your business or leadership position. Put that skill to work again.

5. Protect your company’s culture
For your company to survive and thrive during a crisis, nurture and protect the company culture you’ve worked so hard to create. This requires you to model strength for your employees, and to communicate honestly and often with them. The goal is to keep fear at a minimum and to make your employees feel safe. Let them know that they are doing a fabulous job during all the changes. Listen to their ideas. Ensure they feel part of the team and valued. Above all else, make sure they through your words and your actions, that you will lead them through the storm.

Embrace the Challenge
They say that necessity is the mother of invention. And it’s true! Often, the best innovations come during times of crisis. The key is for you to assess the situation, determine where your business can add value, and then take action using these outlines strategies. When you do, you’ll find that you can weather any obstacle and emerge as the marketplace leader. o


Shelley Armato is CEO at MySmartPlans, a provider of best-in-class SaaS construction technology that eliminates risk, creates transparency and protects the budget. She provides professional construction services to some of the most prestigious business owners in the healthcare, scholastic, government, and other commercial market sectors. Contact her at www.mysmartplans.com.