In these very strange times, how we operate now will impact how we are able to operate in the future. We need to be thinking about how we want the world to look and operate when they let us all go back out to play.
Let me explain with a few examples ……
I LOVE my yoga studio. Before the shut down/isolation/social distancing I was there 3-5 times a week.
Now that I can’t go to my yoga studio, I have had to look for other options. And there are a LOT of options out there - many of them free. And some of them are really good. But in a perfect non-coronavirus world I would rather go to the studio then have my dogs licking my face while I am trying to do a class in the living room. And it’s super easy to skip a class when the class is whenever or wherever I want and no one else is going to be there…. Just sayin’
My studio decided to try to stream live online classes to maintain their client base (and their cash flow). In the beginning, the tech was woeful - and as they stated…. “we are a yoga studio, not computer technicians” (We could have guessed that even without seeing their eagle pose - the tech was awful). But it’s getting better. And more importantly, it is really critical to me that they are still in business when we come out of this. Because I want to be able to go back to my yoga classes. I don’t want to have to hunt around for a new class or hope that someone opens a studio in place of the one that closes down because of C-19.
So I continue paying my $115 month and cheer on the non-technical yogi’s in the online classes….and look forward to saluting the sun in the same (hot) room in the near future.
Similarly, it’s important that my customers and suppliers are all there when this is over. So I do my best to support them. Whether it’s the gift shop up the street that caries our products or my local printer. The thought of moving forward without them by our side is unacceptable.
I had a flight booked for a conference in Singapore in May. Qantas credited my account for the value of the ticket, and whilst I might have had the funds returned if I made a fuss, if we all do that will Qantas - or any other airline - be in business in 6 months?
So - please think about the suppliers who are important to you - whether it’s your favourite coffee shop, the butcher or your gym. We need them all to be there when we come out of this. If they sell gift certificates, buy some. If there is another way to support them - do it. We need to think really hard about what this is going to look like when it’s over (it will be - I promise). Because if we don’t support each other now - we won’t be there to support each other in the future.
And if you are a small business - make sure that you provide your clients with an easy way to support you. Gift cards, pay it forward, credit accounts, subscriptions - all ways that people can invest in your future. Because we want you around when COVID-19 is kicked to the curb.