Work From Home Guide: How to Adapt Your Small Business During Crisis

When a crisis occurs, it is inevitable that most office-based small businesses will transition to a work-from-home setup. With an economic shutdown in the works, small enterprises are greatly impacted. 

While many are still coming to terms with the long-term implications of unforeseeable challenges, a remote working situation is the new normal that is yet to be figured out by entrepreneurs.  

According to a survey, the majority of onsite employees considered work from home would make them happier. Considering how e-commerce continues to thrive, this online switch has its own benefits.  That said, it is imperative for small-scale businesses to take a stand and adapt to dynamic economic conditions.

This article can assist your small business in organizing protocols, especially if your company has never tried a work-from-home arrangement.  

Make working from home official. 

Switching to a home-office does not mean jeopardizing your job tasks that’s why it’s crucial to treat a work-from-home set up as a real job. 

While remote workers associate their presence at home with resting, this shouldn’t be the case.  Whether you’re a novice or a pro in this situation,  you need to stay on top of things.  

First things first- make working from home your new official protocol.  Jumpstart your morning with your usual warm shower and hearty breakfast.  Better yet, dress up to keep you motivated throughout the day. Nothing beats a confident attitude to reach your goals.  Reality check: working from home in your jammies with a laptop in bed will definitely invite you to catch more zzzs, but it’s not going to help you get through that 8-hour workday.

Create an office-like corner in your house that has everything you need from a comfortable chair to a strong internet connection to keep yourself focused and productive.

Amplify communication.

When you find yourself in a remote working situation, you have to double up on communication.  This means that you have to utilize communication best practices, the right tools for staying connected, and technology to help keep your business growing despite the crisis.  Consider yourself lucky given the abundance of chat and video conferencing apps that make communication with your staff easier.

It is also necessary to ensure your team feels informed, involved, and empowered. Set clear expectations to help your employees orient themselves toward a common objective.  In resolving issues, make a prompt phone call rather than chat and email to avoid miscommunication and to alleviate the anxiety of your colleagues.

It’s also important that you have provided all of your staff members with the tools they need to succeed and maintain productivity, such as STP software and collaboration platforms like Slack. You’d be surprised how much not being in the same room together can impact your team’s productivity if you don’t plan for it. Click here for more information on how technology has changed and improved the remote working experience.

Moreover, schedule a daily video huddle and check on everyone.  A virtual connection is a practical leadership tool to strengthen your communication with your workforce.  Consider this activity a short break from all the pressure of operating your business remotely. 

Adjust your pricing model to unlock cash flow.

Needless to say, every business in crisis is struggling to access cash flow and protect customer loyalty.

A critical situation calls for creative solutions and one effective strategy to beat this challenge is by lowering your product or service’s price for a long-term subscription. A discounted deal will definitely attract more customers and eventually help your business unlock cash flow. 

Whether your company is offline, find ways to shift your business digital or online as much as possible.  And for online businesses, offer more feasible services into online communities and marketplaces.  Eventually, all your hard work will put you in a better position when challenging times are over.

Maintain a positive environment.

A recent study reveals that loneliness is one of the biggest challenges experienced by remote workers. By keeping your positive vibes, this isolation will not be as hard as you thought.

There’s no better way to motivate your co-workers than by interacting with them.  Dance or exercise together in the morning while on a video conference.  Establish a virtual happy hour by sharing funny stories, cocktail recipes. You can also ramp up online happiness by dressing up as your favourite cartoon character. 

Try these tricks and you’ll see a healthy environment that will keep the camaraderie levels and boost your employees’ morale.

Conclusion

Truth be told, there’s no specific timeline for how long your small business might operate remotely.  Nevertheless, the above mentioned tips will help your team achieve a smooth transition and promote productivity. 

After all, you and your team matter the most and clear communication is the key to keep everyone inspired.  You may be temporarily working in confinement but you are working together in the best ways possible.  That’s more than enough to keep your business running and growing. 

 

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