Will You Be Ready When Your Customers Are?

Will You Be Ready When the Crisis is Over?

Will you be ready when the crisis is over? That sentence is timeless depending on how many crises you are accustomed to. YOU know which crisis I’m referring today.

How do you hold up after a catastrophe? Are you energized because you handled it calmly and your team remained functional and relaxed? Or are you exhausted because it was so stressful that the team fell apart and became demoralized? Let’s hope it isn’t the latter. 

Assess Infrastructure Today to Prepare for Tomorrow 

When the latest crisis hit, administrative employees were quickly relegated to work-from-home status and companies were forced to address their remote access capabilities quickly. Home computers, personal laptops, digital devices, internal hardware, servers, phone services, etc. all had to be evaluated and tested for connectivity so daily business communications could continue without down-time.

Employees from small businesses, who rarely worked off-site, scrambled to set up home offices, upgrade hardware and software and learn new programs to communicate with their coworkers and customers. They learned quickly to manage their time efficiently all while navigating their spaces, spouses, children and housemates activities and moods. Relaxation apps and classes became all the rage in the extra sacred minutes we had leftover in our busy days.

Service providers were slammed with frantic calls to help and had to make some tough decisions. How to prioritize their customers? Think back to your service calls. Were they quick responses or slow? Does your service provider have a weak infrastructure or are they prioritizing their customers based on FIFO or something else? Size of the emergency? Company’s business potential? Fast or slow payers? Pleasant or difficult to work with? Boy who cried wolf? Or all of the above?

Take a minute to assess your relationship with your service providers. If they helped you out of a major jam it is probably a good time to send them a thank-you note. Or a lobster dinner.

Technology is Connecting People Everywhere 

On the personal side, everyone learned about new communication apps: Zoom Conferencing, Blue Jeans App, Houseparty, Google Hangouts and of course, FaceTime for groups. Some of our parents and grandparents, whom we wrote off long ago as tech-hopeless, surprised us and learned new apps quickly to stay in touch with the kids, grandchildren and best friends they missed so dearly. Our doctors went online to communicate with at-risk patients quickly and our parents took advantage of the new systems. Maybe our older family members (and doctors) are not so set in their ways after all. More reasons for us to reassess our opinions!

As we speak, thousands of people are catching up with old friends, families are having digital dinners together, Grandparents are reading bedtime stories, friends are enjoying virtual happy hours, and community religious groups are holding services.

Times have changed for the better no matter how difficult the struggle. Is your business going to keep up or lag behind the technology curve?

Are all of these changes easy for you? Is your business handling it well without a dramatic breakdown in communication and morale? If you work alone, are you OK? Do you have a plan in place for the immediate future and are you comfortable enough to withstand the drop in sales for awhile? Are you getting all the stimulus money you need? 

NOW is the Time to Repair and Prepare

Or are you more on the stressed-out side of things? If so, now is the best time to reassess your infrastructure. There will always be emergencies and in the short term most of us can handle them. What this crisis did for small business owners is shine a light on the things that have been ignored for too long. It exposed the cracks in the foundation in one fell swoop.

When this crisis finally comes to an end, I hope you thrive. More importantly, right now, I hope you and your loved ones are safe and healthy no matter where you find yourself at this strange moment in time.

Read about what we are doing to support you and your business right now. If there is anything we can help you with to make business a little easier right now, please reach out. We are here for you. 

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