business strategy

Strategies for Strengthening Your Business During the Pandemic

Reimagining your business strategy before you’ve even launched, or are in the early stages of a startup, adds a level of stress no budding entrepreneur wants to take on. However, such is the reality of the world we live in today. Outlined below are a number of considerations, recommendations and strategies to consider as you re-shape your business plan.


StartupNation exclusive discounts and savings on Dell products and accessories: Learn more here

Build a flexible strategy

  • Your strategy document will need to be a day-by-day, week-by-week, month-by-month living document.
  • Reimagine your customer journey to look at all contact points to understand what changes and modifications are needed for your business plan.
  • Determine the adjustments needed to reduce risk and maximize the “new” customer experience and lay out a path to that point.
  • Ensure this strategy is a lateral extension of your pre-pandemic plans wherever possible to align your capabilities with the pivot (minimizing additional infrastructure where possible).
  • A shift to more local sourcing and shorter supply chains.
  • A general downshift in retail.
  • A significant reduction in commuting.
  • Dramatically increased online spending and utilization.
  • Social distancing (may be here for a sustained period, may also be the new normal in certain scenarios).
  • Increased demand on technology and virtual interfaces.
  • Substantial shift to work from home models.
  • Increased recreational time that comes with remote work and commute burden reduction.
  • A shift from large group activities to small group activities. 


These are just a few other aspects to consider in this new world order

Communicate really well. This is probably the biggest differentiator between those businesses that are thriving and surviving and those that are suffering the worst financially. As your business plan realigns during this time of transition, it’s incredibly important to communicate effectively with all stakeholders, from your investors through to your team members. If you have existing customers, communicating regularly and as transparently as possible is critical.

An example of this would be the Common House, a social club group that swiftly implemented a branded, daily newsletter that included everything from coping with the shift to work-from-home challenges and easy recipes through to fun health tips. These communications were empathetic, topical and on point. They also allowed the Common House team to communicate and promote new virtual social experiences they were implementing to maintain the strong community they had built pre-pandemic.

Pivot to different offerings that leverage the trends driven by the pandemic.

A great example of this is Snowing in Space, a startup in the nitro-coffee space. Before the pandemic, Snowing in Space provided kegerators to businesses for their team members, and this was a large portion of the company’s income.

When COVID shutdowns closed most office buildings, Snowing in Space ramped up its canned nitro coffee sales and expanded its coffee bean business online to augment the lost revenue and broaden its offering to pivot to the new world they found themselves in.

Default to online whenever possible, whether that’s sales, provision of services, virtual meetings, events or training.

Use of QR Codes and platforms for signups, waivers, menus, delivery and what would normally be paper forms.

Develop pre-order forms and platforms for contactless or curbside pickup options or other in-person activities.

Keep people safe in your business using education, signage and protocols:

  • Stock up on personal protective equipment (PPE).
  • Develop effective signage and systems to enhance compliance.
  • Make it easy for people to change or cancel their plans.
  • Use reservation forms or platforms to avoid disappointment or overcrowding.
  • Consider simple screening tests like contactless infrared thermometers.
  • Enforce occupancy limits. This may involve rotating team schedules.
  • Practice social distancing and be aware of time and type of contact.
  • Enhance cleaning protocols to cover all contact surfaces.
  • Consider antimicrobial air filters and systems.
  • Update policies ranging from work-from-home to sick leave policies.

Sign Up: Receive the StartupNation newsletter!

Minimize your legal and liability risks:

  • Create and/or update liability waivers and consent forms using online platforms or QR codes
  • Screen all employees and guests before they enter your establishment.
  • Develop internal contact tracing systems, these could be critical in the future and backtracking is tough.

Pivoting is tough! Pivoting prior to launch, or when you have very little preliminary data is also tough. The good news is that firmly entrenched businesses that have been doing business as usual for a sustained period will often delay a pivot or even avoid it altogether. As a startup, the very flexibility this affords can be part of a winning strategy.

My team and I have found that early-stage businesses are typically nimbler than long established companies. Working with startups and early-stage teams is incredibly rewarding as we reimagine options with these teams that have barely seen the ink dry on their startup plans.

Total
22
Shares
Previous Article
forces compare

Veteran Launches Price Comparison Website to Help Soldiers Save Money

Next Article
wjr business beat

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: The Power of Cause Marketing (Episode 115)

Related Posts
importance of SEO
Read More

The Importance Of SEO In Digital Marketing

Here's a redundant, yet powerful fact: Your customers search online before making any purchase decisions. Whether it's a question, a product comparison, reviews about something specific or to test the market to see what all is available, customers turn to search engines for information and product awareness. Therefore, as a digital marketer or an entrepreneur,...
the rigbt software
Read More

The Right Software is Essential for Your Evolving Business

You started a business with a great idea, but when it comes to scaling it up with speedy and effective execution, you need something more than the average spreadsheet and software that only meet your business’s primitive needs. Often, business owners make the mistake of sticking to outdated software which hinders growth and profitability. Business...
employee experience
Read More

Employee Experience: Culture, Involvement and Career Development

Businesses focusing on customer experience is a given. After all, no business will thrive, or even succeed, without the support of the market it seeks to capture. But ensuring customers remain happy with your products and services is not the be-all and end-all of effective business management. Or at least it should not be. An...
scale up
Read More

6 Strategies for Local Startups to Scale Up Nationally

If you’re thinking about launching a business or have started one recently, there’s no need to restrict your goals to the local area. Here are six ways to compete on a national level. 1. Create products that address common pain points. One way to increase your chances of becoming nationally relevant is to ensure your...