Ok, relax, meditate, work out, do whatever it takes to collect your wits; it’s just beginning. The Corona-virus is here.
We’re all in the same boat; at least, most of us are. My business is closed to. My in in store training’s have been canceled. Yes, it’s scary, and it’s time for us to band together. My neighborhood is not only quiet; it’s desolate. I went to the little store across the street, just to check in. I love Joe, and his retail store has the coolest things. Today he said he’s sure they are going to tell him to close. What will he do? He will stay in the store and start thinking.
It’s time for all of us to start thinking and feeling. If you run a business and have employees it’s a good time to speak with them as a group and each one individually. It’s likely that each one has different circumstances that are giving them more angst during this crisis. Children at home from school (who will take care of them), a spouse who’s not working, and everyone worrying about their future. As an owner, you have the same issues and a few more. As of tonight my state, New York, is basically closed. I’m worried about the hourly workers in my neighborhood as well as myself. My neighbor and I have decided to cook daily, and I can deliver. We have put up an emergency site just for our street!
Here is something’s, I think are important for all of us business owners.
Check your business interruption insurance. Likely not going to cover those that have to stay home but may cover merchandise that isn’t going to arrive.
Make calls to your elected officials; be sure they know you will need money for your business–grants for your business, not just loans. What good are loans if you don’t have customers.
Check in with your landlords, utility company and your insurances. It’s best to tell them your situation before they start sending notices. This applies to everyone in your business so make sure you have this discussion.
Take care of yourself physically and discuss this with your employees. If you can’t go to the gym, give everyone’s time to have time to run outside, or if the gym is open, go. My gym is closed for at least a week.
If you have a message that you want to get out, let me know, I’m not hosting a podcast. Last week, I interviewed Greg Hadfield, from Century, Professional flooring & Cleaning, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He said the response from the interview was overwhelming. I’m happy to get your word out also.
Customers not coming in or you have limited hours? You need to stay in contact. If you have an email database, it’s time to start reaching out. Ask what you can do to help them, can you deliver anything to them, can they use your ‘shop at home’ service. Yes, this is the time to have them.
Reach out to the businesses around you. Can you help each other? Even if the business is similar to yours, you’re all in the same boat. When things calm down, you should consider planning events together.
Reach out to your community. They are needing people to deliver food, work in the food Pantry’s. People will never forget your good deeds during these times. Reach out to your local Rotary’s and other groups that are community minded. Maybe your business can be the drop off point for food or whatever else is needed in your community.
This is a good time to educate your staff. I will have my video training up in a few days that should really be helpful. Let’s not have their skills get rusty during this downtime. I will also be conducting webinars with ideas on what we can do.
Start brainstorming; what will you do when this is over? What will be different, what will you have to change?
If you have any ideas let me know so I can print them. It’s time for you to use those problem solving skills that haven’t been in demand.
If you want to talk call me or send me an email. We’ve never had anything like this before so let’s band together. [email protected] or 518-495-5380.
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