The events of the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world as we know it. While everyone strives to bring a sense of normalcy into their lives, it doesn’t look like the world “normal” will ever be the same again. For one thing, the pandemic has changed the world of online shopping and will most likely have long term effects in the years to come.
In a survey titled “COVID-19 and E-commerce”, it was found out that the pandemic has changed the way that online shoppers across nine emerging and developing countries, namely Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, the Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, South Africa, Switzerland, and Turkey.
It was discovered that these respondents took to buying their essentials and other goods online following the events of the pandemic. These same respondents also said that they took the internet to keep themselves updated on world events, health-related issues, and digital entertainment forms.
With that being said, the way that the pandemic has brought about changes, it is up to you, the business owner, to respond to these changes, whether it is welcome or not. As a wise business owner, you must have your own pandemic business plan that will not only make your business survive but thrive as well.
1. Build a crisis management team
Your company should have a crisis management team, which includes key decision-makers from the different departments of your company, including human relations communications and operations. These decision-makers must be able to make timely decisions as vital for the company’s future.
A crisis management team is essential when you have to anticipate any changes, however unwelcome they are.
2. Work on Establishing your Digital Presence
These days, cementing your digital presence is vital to your business because many of your customers will most likely not be able to come to your physical establishment. To operate virtually, take note of digital security breaches. Since many customers are using online platforms nowadays, there will be a rise in the number of phishing emails and scams that are COVID-19 related.
Take this time to remind your customers to be wary of the dangers of downloading suspicious emails and to be wary of their online presence and activities. Doing so will protect the welfare of not only your employees but for your company and employees as well.
3. Learn to Adapt
The ability to adapt is an important skill that everyone needs to learn. Experts say that it is more than just a “go with the flow” sort of attitude, but more on learning to find a way to respond positively to the changes that the pandemic has brought.
For example, the pandemic may have disrupted your normal business operations. Learn to find a workaround for these changes. Your customers would be more concerned now about getting their goods online and have these safely delivered at your door. Give them the option to choose which cheap shipping rates would work well for their budget. They will appreciate this gesture on your part.
4. Upgrade your Systems
Now that everyone is using their online presence, now is the time to upgrade your systems and have scheduled maintenance. A company with an archaic system will put you in a negative light, and you cannot afford that. Identify what works and what does not. These changes will improve your capability of delivering better services to your customers.
5. Give your employees room for growth
Never forget one of your company’s most valuable assets: your employees. The challenges that this pandemic has brought has surely affected them in more ways than one. Now is the time to take performance appraisals to the next level by having more one on one meaningful conversations with them and giving them the opportunity for further learning online. This way, they will be able to have the necessary resources to advance in their career.
Change can be challenging, but it does not necessarily have to be bad. While the events of the pandemic have certainly changed the world on a global scale, the best way to sail across these strange seas is to know where to navigate yourself.
The same goes for businesses. People, including business owners, are weathering the same storm, but they are on different boats. You should keep a clear mind and focus on your goals. You can emerge victorious no matter how frightening the storms may be. A business doesn’t have to suffer if they can plan and prepare to change for the current global crisis. The “new normal” shouldn’t appear so scary after this.