COVID-19 2020: Strategies for Businesses and Startups
What’s plan B?
As COVID-19 continues to keep consumers inside their homes and a number of cities on lockdown, a new group of companies are rethinking virtual events and innovative solutions to handle the pandemic. Unfortunately, there have been a number of businesses counting their losses from the COVID-19 outbreak, too.
Clearly, the main emphasis should be on creating strategies and preparing your business for the unanticipated twists and turns that are yet to come. Here’s how to survive the COVID-19 and keep your business/startup alive:
1. Update Intelligence and Communicate Transparently in a daily basis
Only a few weeks ago, the virus was thought to only be confined in China and was getting taken care of. Now, the virus is in all 50 states. See how fast things are changing? This is why it’s crucial to stay connected with your audience on a daily basis and update them on what’s happening.
2. Reassess business as unusual with new resilience policies
It’s important to continually reassess your business efficiency as the market changes and your business grows. From smarter use of office space to implementing the best practices for your team, check out this guide released by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) on how businesses should plan and prepare for the virus.
3. Shift your sales strategy to online
A big change we are already seeing and will continue to watch unfold is companies taking to digital platforms. For instance, Microsoft pulled the plug on its in-person developer build conference for May and turned it into a digital-event.
Take Stock of your current gross burn rate
How much are you spending each month for fixed and variable expenses? After you’re done taking stock of current gross burn rates, look at your actual revenue each month.If you’re in an early-stage company, that number may be zero. . Subtract your monthly gross burn rate from your monthly revenue to get your net burn rate. If you're making more money than you're spending, you have positive cash flow. If you're a startup and have less revenue than your expenses, that number is negative and represents the amount of money your company loses ("burns") each month. Now take a look at your bank account. See how many months your company can survive burning that amount of money each month. Make this your runway-- the amount of time your company has before it runs out.
Plan for the Short Term
The business impact of COVID-19 might not go away for a while, and now is a great time to plan for the short-term (36 months). The key is to have an effective plan going in, setting realistic but challenging goals, and identifying the baby steps needed to grow your business. Use this principles to help guide you through your short-term plan:
- Listen to your audience
Small businesses should keep up with the changing desires and needs of their audience to keep ahead of potential competition. Ensure your audience that their voices are being heard during these times and that you are grateful for their feedback.
- Simplify daily activities and automate workflows to improve productivity.
By now, you should already know that when you multitask, you tend to make more mistakes. When you toggle back and forth between tasks, the neural networks of your brain must backtrack to figure out where they left off. This being said, remember to optimize efficiency by focusing on important tasks and cultivating deep work.
- Build and nurture your community.
Whether you know it or not, your business has a community. Whether it’s the details in posts or recent conversations around your brand, try to focus on easily building high-quality connections and grow a loyal community base.
- Collaborate with your team to brainstorm new ideas.
The evolution of email and collaboration tools makes working remotely as simple as cutting cake. Whether your team members are located in the same office or scattered across the globe, consistent communication will increase efficiency and productivity and strengthen the team’s bond. Set time aside each week or month, whatever works best for your team, to brainstorm and bounce ideas off of one another for ways to solve problems, improve your business and create new opportunities.