Why startup and small businesses fail as a result of sudden change in norms.
You as a startup have a lot to learn in the business world even if you have gone to a business school. There are some things nature will throw at you that business school might not have in their case study. Hundred startup lessons learned won’t prevent the unexpected from happening. Perhaps, one of them is the present coronavirus pandemic. Even nature never seizes to teach us lessons of not giving up and striking balance between everything.
It has become norms that startups breakdown at the slightest negative change they experience be it change in government policy, change in hierarchical organisation power and the likes. You can read more on how to protect your business from sudden fall
Startups are facing heat this time and some are on the brink of folding up while some have given up already waiting for stimulus package/ support fund to start again. Startup need to make little things count like Facebook, Apple and the like do.
You need a brand community
I’m sure you are aware of the norms of Apple when it comes to product launching. Apple brings people together in a conference and tells them how their new product can make life easier for them. Everyone is obsessed with an easy life, right? That brand community I’m talking about. You need to let your customer feel important; that you are always for them. That’s what a brand community will do for you.
Brand community helps you with the following:
- Brand evangelism and loyalty
- PR opportunity
- User generated content
- Get feedback, information and ideas from your customer
However, you might not have a big purse like apple to organise a big conference like Facebook and Apple do but you can do your thing in a small way and make it big with your online presence. Distribute flyers to your customers telling them about your new product or improved services, a survey may be needed to get data on an average day and time customers will be free to attend your conference (if need). If you think your business does not worth a conference for a product lunch, how about inviting them to an event where you are “giving back to the society”? Perhaps, an event that will benefit their children, they will definitely love to attend.
You need an online presence
Small businesses are fond of neglecting the web and focus on the physical world. Social media are beginning to accommodate small businesses. It enables small businesses to connect with their existing customer (and get closer to them) and meet new customers. How would you get closer to your customer by connecting with them on social media? If you don’t have personal data of your customers, social media can provide them for you. How about surprising them or their ward(s) on their birthday with a text message, a gift, a cake, etc to celebrate them? Most people post their interests, hobby, and what’s going in their life on social media.
Always prepare for the worse
Some businesses were all organized (before the Coronavirus pandemic) but lack the financial capacity to operate an all remote work style now. That is why the unemployment rate is increasing in this period of pandemic. Businesses are cutting down costs vigorously and focusing on people with major job roles now. It’s now necessary for everyone to skillup during this pandemic as unemployment rate is increasing. Some businesses that deal in buying and selling of consumer goods now employ logistics as their means of goods delivery.
Big companies were quick to adjust to the effect of Coronavirus pandemic on work-life because there are hierarchical and role play plans in play long before Covid – 19 outbreak. It’s not just the role play that really matters in a business setting but the teamwork and the ability of workers to work with little or no supervision. It’s a discipline thing, culture, and core value of the business. According to Sandler, teamwork does not only foster creativity and learning but also promote wider sense of ownership.
Businesses that lack teamwork operation prior to Coronavirus pandemic would find it hard to continue operations effectively. Even when businesses that have it together were shaken to the root by the pandemic. A very important part of any organisation is co-work/teamwork. If a business executes projects via a one-man approach, don’t you think getting teams to work together on projects will take much time to happen if it’s even going to happen?
Learn from the lessons listed above and you will have strong feet in the ground in times of trials in your business.