Business is anything but usual during the COVID-19 outbreak. If you are trying to navigate the business world amidst the coronavirus outbreak, you have likely discovered a variety of challenges. This is especially true when it comes to dealing with customers and employees, but challenges seem to arise daily.
What can you do to navigate the business in this new COVID-19 world?
Dealing with Customers and Clients
Maintaining contact with customers and clients is essential during this time. There are several things you can do to ensure your relationship with customers remains strong during this time of social distancing:
- Make sure customers and clients understand how important health and safety is to your business. Let them know what you are doing to promote and maintain a safe environment, and explain how your team is doing everything it can to follow health protocols.
- Demonstrate your commitment to protecting your team and your customers. Something as simple as offering hand sanitizer when clients enter your building or providing masks allows them to see that you are taking the health risks we face seriously.
- Utilize technological advancements to maintain client and customer relationships. Tools like Zoom, Google Hangouts, and FaceTime are all helpful for holding “face-to-face” meetings while still maintaining social distancing guidelines.
The way you manage your team is as important as how you deal with clients and customers during the COVID-19 outbreak. You can keep the workplace safe and protect employees, while also setting the highest standards in health and safety by:
- Setting a good example yourself. Make hand washing a priority, sanitize high-traffic and high-contact areas, and learn how to sneeze and cough safely. Make it clear that you intend to stay home if you have a fever or other coronavirus symptoms and that you expect employees to do the same.
- Reduce the risk of spread by not shaking hands in the workplace. Find a way to greet employees and clients that you must interact with face-to-face that does not involve touching.
- Create clear workplace expectations and make sure everyone understands them. Provide information about the guidelines verbally and in writing to your team, and keep the guidelines posted for everyone to review.
- Make sure your team understands the other risks they face that are indirectly related to the virus. For instance, you can review cybersecurity risks related to COVID-19 and let employees know what to do if they suspect something is suspicious.
There are several things you can do to keep your business running smoothly during this time, such as:
- Take a positive approach to run your business as close to usual as possible and avoid doing anything that looks as if you are trying to capitalize on the crisis.
- Promote honesty and take a calm and reassuring approach.
- Be realistic and upfront about changes – if achieving something will take longer than originally expected, communicate openly about the delay.
- Use effective communication and let clients know if you are unable to meet their expectations.
- Stay informed about the latest developments regarding the virus and how it affects your business.
If you would like to know more or speak to someone about navigating business in a COVID-19 world, contact Ann O’Malley Shake.