The last couple of months have been hell for most small businesses. Many have been forced to completely shut down operations due to lockdown in most places to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. As the world waits for a cure for the pandemic or a vaccine to protect humanity, there is a need for small businesses to adjust to the realities on ground. Here are a few things they can do right now:
Assess Your Finances
This is a good time to assess your finances and find alternative ways to remain solvent. Small business owners and managers should identify their immediate and most important expenses, understand what can be deferred or renegotiated, and find alternative means of generating cash. Cash reserves should also be used prudently at the moment.
Negotiate With Creditors
Small businesses are the worst hit by the coronavirus pandemic, and many creditors understand this. Small businesses are in a good position to negotiate with creditors to defer some payments until there is a meaningful improvement in business activities. Some creditors may be willing to reduce or forgive debts.
Reassess Your Staffing Needs
There is nothing wrong with cutting staff hours or pay if it can help to keep the business afloat. Assess your staffing needs according to the current state of business activities in your firm and what you anticipate in the immediate future. If there is a need to lay off some staff or furloughing employees, then go for it.
Consider Alternative Working Arrangements
Depending on the kind of business you are involved in, some alternative working arrangements can be made with the staff. Consider the possibility of your team working from home if your workplace cannot be opened yet. It may require a little extra investment in work-from-home tools.
Keep In Touch With Customers
This is an important time for every business to build a better relationship with the customers. Staying in touch during this trying time will make your customers believe that you genuinely care for them. Share information that can help them and make offers that can help them deal with the difficulties caused by the pandemic.
Consider Adjusting Your Business Model
Is there a possibility that your business can serve your customers during this crisis? Are there alternative business models you can adopt that keep serving your customers without breaking any orders. Explore all possible business models like ecommerce investments that can help you survive this period and beyond.
It is tough for most small businesses worldwide. The COVID-19 pandemic has done more harm than most people imagined. It is time for the world to adapt to the challenges until a viable solution is found. Small businesses can adopt the measures discussed here for the time being.
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