The implementation of regulations like social distancing and lockdowns are necessary to protect human life to fight the COVID-19. While it’s true, the damage to businesses through these implementations are undeniable. Kristialina Georgieva, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, said that such measurements have stopped economies. She put up the IMF’s anticipation, saying that it will bring the worst economic breakdown since the Great Depression in 1929.
Companies are now facing huge challenges in the path that they never expected. Bankruptcy, debt servicing, widespread unemployment- to name a few. Businesses need to adapt to the environment to cover up the damages of this unique situation. As a business leader, you have to modify your business structure to allow your workforce to be effective and efficient. It seems to be the only way to survive and it can set your team apart from the others. Here’s how to help your workforce to adapt during the pandemic:
Everything is in your fingertips with the internet
With the touch of the internet, you can continue day-to-day business activities in alternate ways. Since your employees can’t show up in the office during the pandemic time, move them online. Share everything you usually did in the meetings with virtual meeting tools. This will reduce the pressure of sharing work ideas effectively.
To ensure everyones’ working effectively at home, use remote employee monitoring software. Not only it allows to find remote work efficiency, but also lets employees work in flexible hours with remote check-in. It’s a great way to build trust from both sides, which is important for holding the business in such an unexpected time.
Adapt or die- business’s darwinian theory
As a business owner, you must be well aware that peoples’ needs and wants rapidly changes over time. The changing pace has been considerably higher in the pandemic period and you have to adjust your plan accordingly. Pernod Ricard, owner of Absolut Vodka, for example, is now using the stocked ethanol to produce hand sanitizer. The demand for alcohol is not much in this outbreak time. Richard knows it very well and went with the “Supply and demand” game to survive his business and his workforce.
Change your teams’ workstyle with the same motto in mind. Ask them to work from home, for now, tell them to set up a mini-office at a corner, and participate in productivity. Finding the right desk and sitting in a comfortable chair will eliminate most of the problems by reducing the mental pressure of employees.
Generosity attracts mass community
People remember when companies show concern and sympathy in hard times. It’s the reason many companies engage in relief efforts towards the community. Woodstock Brewery, Drifter Brewing Company, and many other brewing companies around Western Cape, South Africa have formed a similar collective effort to feed people in need. Their effort towards the need won’t be forgotten as they are using resources to assist even after the pause in production. Google is also serving teachers and students with tools to accelerate online classes and ensure the learning process through the pandemic.
Ask your team to work together with the same motivation in mind. Set up plans to step toward customers in calls or emails with heartwarming messages and gratification. A proper approach with the surrounding condition in mind can totally change your gameplay in a challenging situation like this pandemic.
A little goodwill goes a long way
Proof to customers that you are providing value to them even through the tough timeline. If you can prove that your company provides value no matter what, then customer loyalty will be beneficial in the long run. Qatar Airways did the same thing when they announced the rebooking policy on the 14th of May 2020. The “Travel with Confidence” policy allowed passengers to have extensive flexibility and additional options. Any customer who books tickets before the 30th of September 2020 is offered to change travel dates and destinations without additional fees.
Every team needs to come up with policies like this to prove they work from heart for the customers. This may eventually increase sales, so try to implement some strategies into a business that will show your teams’ effort for goodwill.
Use social media to spread words
With the correct use, social media can help spread good words about your business and the hard work of your team. Find and use all the right platforms to interact with customers and establish relationships. Your friendly approach towards customers will work as a good word of mouth and share how well-putted your business teams are. Forming alliances with other companies is another way to increase visibility in the digital world and get more attention.
Find defense for every scenario
Sit with your team in virtual meetings and plan for all possible outcomes. Pandemic is controlling everything in such a way, it is practically impossible to assume the future. So plan for the worst scenario, the best outcome, and everything in between. Apparently, that’s the best way to survive your team and the business.
Reward loyalty by adapting prices
People are either losing jobs or temporarily laid off or facing massive salary reduction during the pandemic- the financial crisis is common for everyone. You need to adapt prices that reflect your understanding of the loyal customers and jobholders. Include free bonuses and other perks for them. Find ways to ensure that your employees remain loyal to your company even after the pandemic finishes no matter what.