Khushboo Jain

Co-Founder and COO,

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Entrepreneur’s Guide To Ensuring Business Continuity Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

With the number of changes and issues occurring, both in the local and global markets, many businesses could risk going bankrupt if they are unable to navigate through this proverbial storm.

Over the past few weeks, the entire world has almost come to a complete halt. The rising fear of Coronavirus (COVID-19), has managed to dent the global economy in a significant way. Most companies are experiencing a slowdown, and are dealing with unforeseeable changes in their operation. The last few weeks have already seen an unprecedented rise in the number of employees working from home, and only more changes can be expected as of now.

The impact of this pandemic is more prominent on small businesses and startups. With the number of changes and issues occurring, both in the local and global markets, many businesses could risk going bankrupt if they are unable to navigate through this proverbial storm. Sustainability during this period will be of utmost importance to entrepreneurs.

Looking inwards

The most difficult process for entrepreneurs at this time would be taking a long hard look at their business and asking themselves what could go wrong. At the end of the day, businesses need to generate revenue to function. Identifying flaws in the business that you have set up will not be an easy task but is essential to identify problem areas and find solutions to them in time. Finding ways to keep costs down, while still maintaining the means to generating revenue should be the main focus for entrepreneurs during this period.

Showing preparedness

At this moment, every entrepreneur should be looking at all the possible outcomes for their business. Being aware of the outcomes, especially the bad ones, will let you be more prepared to face them if they do occur. There may be some tough calls that will need to be taken during this testing time, and you must be able to execute them. Your preparedness will help you design a plan and guide your business through the haze.

Being adaptable

COVID-19 has pushed most businesses out of their comfort zone. Everything from your business model to your corporate structure, to the attitude of your employees and team members, could require changes to be made. With the number of forced changes that the corporate environment is facing, your ability to adapt to these changes will determine how well you are able to lead your company. One could say that, at the moment, being able to adapt positively to the current scenario, could be the best skill an entrepreneur can have.

Being realistic

During this period of slowdown, you will need to be more realistic in setting goals. The demand for the product or service that your business provides will change drastically depending upon the behavior of your customers and their needs. Having realistic goals, during this period will help in keeping your business going, while also preventing unnecessary losses from occurring. Your goals should also be flexible enough to adjust to the sudden changes in the market. This process may need constant fine-tuning and is necessary to draw out a better plan of action.

Communicating effectively

As most of you may have experienced, many corporate offices have embraced either a hybrid or a remote working policy. While your employees and team members may not be physically near you, it is your responsibility to keep them updated and well-informed. Make sure that all the channels of communication, both face-to-face as well as online, are set up and functioning smoothly. You will also need to learn how to adjust your style of communicating over different channels, such that it allows for better and more efficient dispersion of information.

Showing trust

At this moment, your team, employees, clients, and customers are probably not in the best space both physically and psychologically. It is during this time that the trust and relationships that you have built with them will be important, and will also require more work. Showing them that you trust their decisions will help them have more faith in you and your execution. For your employees and team members, the fact that you trust in their ability to function at a high level will make them more accountable and effective.

Being empathetic

This is a tough period for all, and not everyone will be able to adjust to the rapid changes that are happening due to COVID-19. Your employees, vendors, distributors, suppliers and even you yourself are now in a stage of recalibration and are all still getting accustomed to these changes. While frustration is natural in these circumstances, realizing that almost everyone is going through a similar situation will help you to be more empathetic and in turn build stronger working relationships.

Being innovative

Even though the slowdown is as real as it gets, it is also true that adversity leads to creativity. By finding an innovative solution to your issues, you may find a way to be ahead of the curve. There is a chance that the eagle-eyed entrepreneur may find a way to turn a negative situation into a positive one. With the number of changes that are occurring, you may also find a way to start a new venture that could solve the issues of the current situation.

Leading by example

As this period continues to go on, frustration, anxiety, lethargy and a lot of other negative emotions will start creeping into people. Naturally, this will affect their performance. However, by setting an example and holding yourself to a high standard, you will only inspire your peers and colleagues. If they see that you are still putting in all the efforts, they will feel more accountable for their actions too.

This period will be a test of an entrepreneur’s leadership, communication, and relationship-building skills. This is a testing time and you will be the main source of direction and inspiration for many. Your ability to perform through this difficult time will determine how well your business performs. This is the reason why you should now, more than ever, focus on your own mental and physical health. Only by taking care of yourself you can take care of your business.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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