6 Tips to Optimize your Business and Support Employees during COVID-19
Coronavirus has already done a big number on us. Some say that it is easily the most searched keyword and the biggest trend in Google search history. It has become the nemesis for schools, restaurants, and also human life especially the elderly. The virus is spreading like wildfire and no one knows when it may stop. Around 30.7 million small businesses have already been affected due to the epidemic and it is just a hard blow to the gut for any country financially.
However, some small businesses are thriving in money and are doing a good job regardless of the pandemic. These businesses because of the help of friends, family, and a robust economy were able to survive.
Although it may be undecided as to how long the virus is here to stay, a step-by-step actionable plan can always be devised by the leaders of the companies to mitigate their losses and offer support to their employees at the same time. Below are the 7 ways through which you can sail through this situation and optimize your business!
1. Take control of your employees and yourself
With the rising epidemic, all the media should cover the massive outbreak of this virus around the world and instill fear among those who are not adopting protective measures against it. Empowering the employees during such a time can be considered as a bold move by the CEO of the company because it could provide a sense of reassurance in them and they would feel gratifying.
Always try to be flexible with your employees. Communication is the key to pull operations and news. Even if your business goes out of order or remote, always make all decisions in front of your employees so that they would feel that they are part of the plan and engage better in their work.
Try to reduce conferences or all-in person meetings. The weekly check-ins and conference meetings are included as well. The remote work has already changed the lives of kids, parents, and elders for either the better or the worse.
2. Cut costs where possible
Cutting costs for any employee should be made imperative because of the unsure state of Coronavirus and for how long is it going to stay.
It is necessary to know where your business can take the biggest financial hit. According to NFIB Research Center, a quarter of the small businesses are reporting that their businesses are being affected negatively because of the Coronavirus making the sales 42% lower. Employees’ sickness has been registered at a 4% rate and supply chain disruptions are around 39%.
You need to be transparent with your employees when it comes to the sales forecast this year and how the business needs to be kick-started again after the storm cross passes.
3. A leave of absence might be a good gesture for employees
Likely, you might not be able to pay your employees during the coronavirus epidemic, and hence to ease their suffering you can always ask them to take a leave and enjoy themselves until the situation cools down.
Although before doing this, take a look at your lean business plan. This plan can help you re-evaluate your decisions that you need to make for the company to prove yourself and your employees that it still has a future.
4. Loans available to small businesses
For those businesses that have been affected by COVID-19, the government of India has introduced Aatmanirbhar Bharat Scheme. Under this policy, the Credit Guarantee Fund Scheme (CGS) for small businesses have been introduced by the GOI to offer them collateral-free credit.
The existing and the startups are eligible to avail of this scheme. The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), and GOI have introduced a trust named Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) to deploy the Credit Guarantee Fund Scheme for Micro and Small Enterprises. You can get benefited from this scheme to re-build your business.
5. A communication plan must be devised for the customers
Aside from your business interactions, tell your employees what measures can be taken to prevent the spread of the disease.
Try to find instances that keep customers engaged and see if certain strategies play their part or not. Also, take a look at the messages that are empathetic and ignore those that are not.
An aura of positivity is the best thing that you need around yourself during these times. So many commercial buildings and restaurants are doing their part of spreading positivity amidst the crisis and so should you.
6. Take your business online
Taking your business online seems to be the viable option in this crisis as by sitting at home you may as well earn some profit. This will prompt customers to buy your products online and shop for their favorite items. Due to the mass online transactions being made by the customers that are staying at home, coupons can be created that offer discounts on products depicting that this storm can be ridden out. Messaging must be bleak and should show a connection to your brand’s personality.
Coronavirus is not going to subside anytime soon. We need to learn to live with it! There are some of the most effective hacks to optimize and thrive in your business in this pandemic!
- Mamta Sharma