The COVID-19 pandemic has definitely caught many people unaware and brought the world to its knees. As the virus continues to spread, everyone is now on the edge and many industries are forced to shut down, especially small businesses.
If you are a small business owner, you may be wondering what the future holds as the crisis is still ongoing.
To keep your spirits up, here are 10 tips you can abide by to help you during this COVID-19 crisis.
1. “This will pass”
Like other pandemics and natural disasters, COVID-19 will definitely pass. It may not be today or tomorrow, but the day will come that a cure for it will be discovered. Man has always stood strong in any challenge and in this current climate, we are slowly adapting to the new normal and patiently wait for the solution to be discovered.
2. Stick to your company vision and values
Your business will definitely take a hit, especially the people who work for you. To give them your support and offer encouragement, stick to what your company believes in and be there for each other.
Read More: Getting Your Workplace Ready for COVID-19
3. Duplicate in-office experiences through online means
Even if regular services are on halt depending on the industry you are in, you should still make it a point to help your employees continue working and feel as if they are in the office even while online.
Check online apps like Zoom and Google Meet so you can do your regular meetings. For an extra twist for interactions, you can use productivity apps like Slack so they can relax after working.
4. Stay positive and hopeful
As noted in number one, this crisis will be over before we know it and until then, it is important that we stay positive that it will happen soon and everything can be back to a somewhat normal pace.
You should also stay hopeful that there will still be a future for your business after this and use the time to find ways to improve.
5. Open doors for communication
Since most of your workers may be working from home, it is important that you open doors for communication.
You should always be with your team even online and do it daily. Even if its not work related, ask them if they are ok and need support. Never look down on the power of open communication, it can boost an employee feeling down.
Importantly, you should consider transparency in your communication to your employees. If your business is going through a rough patch, it actually helps to be open about it and talk through with your staff while presenting them the confidence that you are working on it.
6. Provide support for one another
No matter how big or small your business is, you definitely built a second family in it. Make it a point to support each other during this trying time, especially those who are hit the hardest.
It doesn’t have to be with monetary support. Your workers will definitely appreciate it if they know you are there for them to lean on.
My friend’s company started a buddy system where a coworker will be assign to another coworker in a different department. The purpose is to have the buddy check in with each other once a day for 10 minutes via a phone call, not talking about work but just usual chatter about how each other is coping. 50% of his company is still remote working so this buddy check-in idea is brilliant in making sure that everyone isn’t feeling left out or lonely.
I think this is a fantastic idea!
7. Always sanitise and disinfect office spaces
If your business can work on a small capacity, make it a point to disinfect and sanitise your workspace regularly.
This will provide some comfort to your workers who are still reluctant to go back to work with the virus still spreading. If anyone on your team still feel uncomfortable going to work, have a contingency plan where he or she can opt to work from home at the moment.
Read More: The Fear of Returning to Work is Real
8. Be quick to respond to anything
Whatever the issue may be, whether your workers are asking for assistance or just want to talk, you should be quick to respond to these inquiries.
If you respond late, they may become uncertain if they are still needed in the company and feel more stressed than before. Give them time off as well because it can get stressful working in a different environment.
9. Stay calm and thankful
Working in these uncertain conditions can be very stressful, especially for those working remotely from home. Stay calm and show to your workers that even though it is an uncertain period, you are thankful that everyone is still there and you are with each other.
10. Take things one step at a time
Finally, it is not sure when we can safely say it’s ok to go back to work. Even if you could go back to your workplace, rushing things can be dangerous. Take things slowly and see how you can improve your workplace and stay safe at the same time. As we all wait for the cure to be made, small businesses must stay strong if they want to get back on their feet. Let these tips guide you and always remember, together we can do this!
For more pandemic related articles to help you and your businesses, here are some:
Being an Entrepreneur during COVID-19
What should we do to minimize COVID-19’s economic impact?
Covid-19: Employees asked to Take Unpaid Leave by Companies
Covid-19: Malaysia Movement Control Order Announcement – Biggest Impact will be Workers
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