How to Keep Your Business Afloat in the Time of COVID-19

Ché O'Donnell-Gibson
July 13, 2020

Currently, the world is faced not just with a pandemic but also a global economic downfall. Big brands have filed bankruptcy, jobs are being lost, and the collapse in customer demand for non-essential products continues on a downward slope. Where the worldwide economy is headed to remains uncertain at this point. 

However, even when some questions remain unanswered, one thing is for sure. Those in business should find a way to recover and cope in a post-pandemic world.

While New Zealand is among the few lucky countries who have eliminated the Coronavirus, business challenges remain. If at this point, you’re still unsure on how to start, here’s a guide that should help set your business on the road to recovery. Read on.

4 Steps to Help Your Business Survive the Post-Pandemic World

1. Ensure Mental and Physical Wellness

The road to recovery could be tough. You need to take care of your health to be able to handle the business challenges that may be thrown your way.

Primarily, you have to abide by the safety protocols--and these should apply to you and the people you’ll be working with. You also have to maintain a safe and sterile environment to ensure that you’ll be able to do business while keeping risks out of the way.

Alongside, mental health is also important. During this time, there is a tendency for people to experience anxiety especially with the threat of financial losses, unemployment, bankruptcy, instability, personal issues and more.

Exercise, regain your focus, and maintain a healthy mindset. As a business owner, your mental stability has an impact on the people around you. Try to stress less and find a support group that you can depend on when needed.

2. Explore Added Resources

As businesses face financial hardships, it matters to know where you can find added resources at this time. Luckily, governments from around the world have already taken initiatives to help small businesses survive.

In New Zealand, Wage Subsidy Extension is available for employers and even self-employed individuals who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This subsidy aims to cover employee wages for a 8-week period.

Employers may submit their applications from June 10, 2020 to September 1, 2020. On the other hand, those who have been eligible for the 12-week subsidy will have to wait for the payments to be finished before they can reapply for the extension.

These added resources that the government is making available can help businesses evolve and survive the crisis.

3. Develop a Financial Plan

Running a business is not just all about profit. There are also the expenses that are essential for the existence of a business. These usually come in the form of wages, rent, and utilities. Furthermore, the bigger the industry, the bigger the expenditures too.

In a time of crisis, a sound financial plan is crucial. You must be able to prepare for instances when revenue is not stable or when losses become apparent. Remember, nothing is certain at this point. There is a possibility to lose a client or have less revenue as compared to what you have been earning before.

More than ever, this is the time to assess your financial status and be mindful about where your money is going. Ask yourself: Do you have enough funds to survive the next couple of months even with losses? Are there expenses that you can eliminate to help your business and your employees survive?

Here are some tips that can help you get by even with limited revenue:

  • Determine essential and non-essential expenses. If you can eliminate the latter without affecting your operations, then do so.
  • Practice inventory control. This is not the best time to overstock and carry excess items. Again, keep what’s essential. This is an effective way to avoid unnecessary losses.
  • Downsize. It may be time to freeze hiring and work with the strengths of the current team you have. Another way to downsize is to cut down on the cost of utilities. A part of your revenue may be going to rental costs. This could be the best time to consider coworking spaces so you can enjoy the flexible terms it offers and the added benefits for you and your team.

4. Embrace Changes

The changes that COVID-19 has brought and continues to bring could be overwhelming. However, it is the ‘bitter medicine’ that you have to swallow and bear with. After all, you are not entirely sure if this will be the last crisis that your business will experience.

Now is the time to embrace changes and reassess your business model. 

Will your business thrive in a remote setup? Do you offer products that your customers consider as essential? Are you willing to go digital or even explore other products/services to tap a bigger market?

You may not see it right away but there may also be opportunities that you can capitalize on and take advantage of at this time. 

In the end, companies that are agile, adaptable and innovative are the ones that will survive a crisis. No matter how promising your business model is, it is important to remain flexible so you can change directions when necessary and make impact bearable no matter how big a crisis you may encounter.

Alike is a coworking space in Auckland CBD that offers businesses a premium location in the heart of Auckland. Our shared office spaces can be your new office address that offers amenities and an excellent working environment minus the expensive cost.

Contact us to book a visit or to enquire about our shared spaces.

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