As you expect, this pandemic hits small business - hard. Our sales took a dive and the morale of the team is of course affected. Though we are mostly working online and remotely even before the pandemic, our logistic was halted and sales took a dive.
Like any other small business owner, we looked at some silver-lining. Most experts said that the way to go for now is to cut expenses and more importantly, take the time to deepen the relationship with our clients.
Deepen the relationship, we did.
We reached out to clients and launched several IG and FB live series introducing different ways to continue interacting with them. We've done a seminar-type Live series. We've also invited to discuss their advocacy. Lately, we invited Laura to teach us meditation. We continue to think and launch more ways to connect with them.
In terms of cutting expenses, we tried to limit our operational expenses, but we surely did not and would not cut labor fee expenses. It is our duty. It is our responsibility to look out for our team members the same way they looked out for Kamila.
It's been a month. I am not sure if the lockdown will be lifted soon in the Philippines. The state of emergency in Japan has just started a few days ago too.
The future indeed looks bleak but we are holding on to hope. As what Sir Powee said in guesting in our IG live series, people remember those (businesses) who stood strong. Besides, there is more reason to stay strong and hold on - our clients, our vision and our team.
WHAT CAN A SMALL BUSINESS DO IN A PANDEMIC
So far, for us, connecting with our clients is working well. We got the chance to get to know them more and have a personal relationship with them. We learned a lot from them on a daily basis.
I really believe that the landscape of businesses after this pandemic will change; as it should. Businesses will become more personal. Personal will become the new brand. The new currency will be relationships rather than just the products.
Maybe this is something I want to share with other small business owners too. It is time that we listen more and communicate more.
There's nothing to lose anyway, everything to gain :)