Reports on the world economy predict that global growth will struggle to recover from travel restrictions, temporary business closure, and lockdown-like approaches. While the decisions to maintain social distancing and self-isolation in every aspect of life and business processes have played a significant role in saving lives and containing the pandemic, they also play against economic stability.
According to IHS Markit, the world economy is expected to shrink by 5.5% in 2020. Unfortunately, the post-pandemic picture of the world, painted by several reports, highlight a slow and painful recovery, punctuated by cautious spending habits from customers, business bankruptcies, and COVID anxiety. If you were planning for growth in 2020, you would have to reconsider carefully. The return to pre-COVID economic levels and stability isn’t expected to happen before another couple of years.
Does it mean you can’t bounce back after the crisis? Things are a little bit more complicated than it appears. You can’t expect to recoup your losses over the second half of the year. However, you can help your business transition back to a post-COVID environment that soothes health fears, personnel fluctuations, and customers’ worries. Think of it as the platform that will enable growth and full recovery in the future.
Make your business as profitable as you can
Business growth may not be on the current agenda; however, profitability is a crucial factor in keeping your company open. Under lockdown and self-isolation, companies have not built any profits. Leaving quarantine emergency measures behind allows you to tackle money matters. Profitability is the process of earning more than your initial costs. At this point, you are only taking into consideration the cost of producing your services or manufacturing goods.
Now’s not the time to include expenses that occurred during the pandemic because your target audience isn’t able to pay for those. Nevertheless, your post-quarantine prices will need to be high enough to generate a profit. Additional health & safety measures are likely to affect production costs and should be taken into account.
Don’t be afraid to hire temps
It can sound odd to hire more personnel in a post-COVID world; however, it is a logical and practical decision. Indeed, industries and sectors that have suffered severe delays in their projects, such as the construction industry or infrastructure maintenance, need to recover the lost time as quickly as possible.
Boosting your team with short-term talent from contractors recruiting agencies such as DSC Personnel, for example, can help address the situation. Temporary labor can provide the experienced assistance required to bring large projects to an end. Projects that can affect the economic recovery, such as urban infrastructure, will be detrimental to the survival of local communities and your business.
Replace face-to-face with informative content
The post-lockdown world will see cautious customers stay away from business interactions as much as possible. It will take time for things to get back to normal. As such, customers are unlikely to pop to the shop to get an item checked in the next few months. That’s precisely why companies have to find new approaches to keep their customers satisfied. Developing informative content material that can answer their most pressing queries will make a huge difference.
FAQ pages are popular, but they lack practical tips to troubleshoot issues or navigate your services/goods with confidence. On the other hand, video material is the simplest way to empower customers to make the most of your goods and services. Making your video multi-platform friendly can help you help your customers.
Accept that you won’t meet your original 2020 goals
Your business objectives for 2020 probably didn’t include surviving a pandemic. In other words, the strategy and goals you created for the year ahead are not relevant anymore. The first thing you need to do to bring your business together is to adjust your goals to the current situation. Reviewing your objectives can be a challenging experience that forces you to ask unpleasant questions. Have you accomplished any of your former objectives? Are goals still realistic? What would a realistic goal look like in a post-pandemic economy?
Respect your employees’ boundaries
As mentioned earlier, going back to normal will not happen immediately. Your customers are likely to be cautious about spending money and coming to your site. However, they are not the only ones who are worried about social distancing and breaking self-isolation protocols. Your employees could also be reluctant to come back to the office as they may not be ready to face contagion risks. You can, however, adapt your work arrangements to support their needs. Employees who can carry on their day-to-day tasks remotely could be allowed to carry on working from their home offices.
If you need some employees on-site, you should ensure the workplace is prepared to welcome workers as safe as possible. Many open-plan offices have introduced pod-like designs to keep staff safe. Others are keeping desks apart and maximizing conference rooms as temporary offices to maintain social distancing between everyone. Whether the solution you pick, it’s a good idea to spend some time discussing fears with employees to ensure you can create a welcoming workplace for them.
Redouble your IT efforts
With everyone working remotely, phishing emails have increased dramatically during the lockdown. Hackers who use phishing strategies rely on misinformation and collective fear to build a credible message. Unfortunately, scammers are not going anywhere. If anything, they’ve become more active in a COVID-19 environment. Training your employees to recognize threats is not sufficient. You should also reach out to IT support companies to protect your data and network from unwanted intruders.
Create a safe and timely logistics plan
Last but not least, businesses need to plan for COVID-aware processes and deliveries. Safety measures and self-distancing strategies are designed to save lives. But they also slow down your operations. As you bring your business into a post-pandemic world, you need to plan and schedule essential H&S protocols as efficiently as possible. Now’s not the time to skip preventive measures. However, introducing a strict schedule for cleaning, safe interactions, and protective equipment supply can help reduce unnecessary time loss.
The post-COVID economy is a new experience for every entrepreneur. There is no denying that growth will become possible again. However, the priority right now is to help your business transition safely out of quarantine. Strategic planning with your team’s and your customers’ safety at heart can help soothe worries and establish your position on the market.
[avatar user=”mike” size=”thumbnail” align=”” link=”file”]Mike Gaudreau is the owner of The Wealthy Boomers, a site devoted to helping seniors make money online. Mike resides in Montreal Canada.[/avatar]