Small-business owners have continued to show resilience in the face of change amid the progression of the ongoing pandemic.
For those who have pivoted their organization to a Covid-19 attractive market or have otherwise managed to maintain a steady cash flow, they ask themselves, “What can I do next for my business?”
The reality of this question is that there is no simple, one-size-fits-all answer. Instead, business owners looking to build on the success they have maintained in recent months must continue to return to the business lessons learned during this crisis. Here are a few ways businesses with the bandwidth to work on their business can act and think proactively to stay competitive:
Communicate with your customers or clients
As your business is changing, so are the needs of your stakeholders. Being resilient during a crisis means staying closely connected with your network and understanding how the changing state of the world has impacted how they want to do business looking forward.
Those who invest in the goods or services of your company often have the most critical eye and can see potential gaps that even those inside your industry can’t offer, especially if your business model directly serves the consumer. Open an avenue for conversation, asking how their needs are changing and thinking strategically about how you can fill those areas.
Actively research industry leaders and trends
As a business owner, it’s always a good rule of thumb to keep tabs on other players in your industry. Now more than ever, it’s especially important to regularly monitor products, strategies, or initiatives larger organizations are implementing to understand where the industry is headed beyond the pandemic. Market changes and industry-wide innovations are occurring at a more rapid speed than usual. Big organizations can oftentimes be a reliable reflection of ongoing change and prompt ideas applicable to your own business.
Test business ideas
When looking for solutions to stay competitive during this time, don’t rule out the idea of testing out fresh business ideas if you have the capacity and time to do so. If possible, conduct regularly occurring brainstorms with your team members. While there is always risk involved when testing a new idea, there can also be great reward, especially for those who can think creatively about solutions needed in this uncertain period. Once you put new ideas into action, enter with the following mindset: if you’re going to fail, fail fast, and be willing and unafraid to try a new idea at the right time again.