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COVID-19 my teacher: 6 small business lessons that will stick

The COVID-19 pandemic has many lessons to teach us on a business and personal level but which of these will stick and which will we lose along the wayside? Let’s look at six small business lessons that we think will stick.

1. Having a back-up plan

Many small businesses operate from month-to-month and don’t have savings for a rainy day. 2020 has taught us that it is critical to put away something for when a crisis hits. There also may not have been an Emergency Preparedness Plan in place which highlighted the critical parts of the business and how to deal with them. This is another part to develop in your business so that you won’t be so hard hit in the future.

2. Being agile

The businesses which have survived well during the pandemic have been agile. They have seen the crisis but have been able to pivot their business in a new and creative direction. The ability to practice agility in a business is started by the leaders having a growth mindset and seeing challenges or failure as lessons to learn from and move forward. Therefore it is important to develop a growth mindset so that you can flourish during crises.

3. Valuing the health of each other

How often have you gone to work when you are slightly sick? COVID-19 has taught us that we should be more considerate of those around us and should we be unwell seek to work from home. This will help to prevent the spread of flu or other sicknesses in an office environment.

4. Re-defining employee’s productivity

Many employees who work from home have recorded that they are more productive than working in an office because there are fewer distractions for them. The lesson to be learnt here is to offer hybrid working conditions where employees can work from home a few days a week and redefine how you measure the productivity of an employee. Rather look at your employee’s output than the hours they spend behind the desk.

5. Investing in technology

Use of the cloud, video-conferencing and cybersecurity has become more prevalent. Businesses have needed to use technologies to help with working remotely and have had to up their cybersecurity because their employees work from home. This pandemic may also have highlighted technologies which companies have been underutilising until now. Another lesson that may continue is the curiosity into what technology is available and how businesses can use it to improve their product or services.

6. Stepping up your digital presence game

Business who had a digital presence and e-commerce store benefited from the lockdown as they were able to still do transactions even though people were unable to physically shop. A digital presence has been critical for a long time but the pandemic has highlighted the importance of being on the internet and being seen on the internet. Going forward it is critical you have a good digital presence and that you use the tools available to ensure you are visible to your niche market.

By keeping these lesson in mind, we can continue to move forward in creating bigger and more prosperous businesses in the future.

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