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In times like these, you can save your business with the right steps and even grow if you continue to keep up the right management.
In times like these, you can save your business with the right steps and even grow if you continue to keep up the right management.

Six things you can do now to manage your business through COVID-19

In the midst of an unprecedented and overwhelming global crisis, DAVID BROWN offers much-needed food for thought as well as practical management tips for retail jewellers.

Right now, like many across the planet, you will be feeling overwhelmed by the recent events that have struck the world.

A situation we could never have imagined six months ago has now come to pass.

Some days, as you look down deserted streets, it’s easy to feel like a survivor from a post-apocalyptic Armageddon. As a species we have not faced these challenges often – but we have faced them and survived before.

We can take great comfort from history and how we have come out of similar experiences stronger, fitter and wiser. Here are a few factors we should reflect on when the challenges of now, and the foreseeable future, start to seem overwhelming.

1. Start with attitude

As an individual, we are powerless to change the status quo and that provides its own form of comfort; it is what it is, and we must accept it. For better or worse we are all in this together and functioning on a level playing field that provides all of us with opportunities going forward.

2. People still want to spend

Amongst the doom and gloom there re some businesses doing well, and I don’t just mean supermarkets and mask sellers.
A business operated by a friend’s son is doing record sales – their product? Specialised seats and motion platforms for car racing video games.

It seems many Millennials are not afraid to spend on products to help wile away the boredom of isolation!

Meanwhile, a recent survey conducted by a colleague in the travel industry showed 90 per cent of respondents still planned to travel in the next 12 months, including internationally. The message from both of these anecdotes is that people are demanding a release.

Once this is over, they will look for opportunities to enjoy their freedom, like flowers springing free from winter snow. If travel is off the table – and I’m betting it will be for most of the year, if not beyond – then these people will need another outlet.

Why not jewellery?

3. Special occasions haven’t ended.

Do you think people want to stop celebrating just because they are stuck at home?

More than ever, they want to enjoy those celebrations in life and feel emotionally connected to their friends and family. Even if you can’t get product to them now, what about vouchers or a special appointment for when they can shop?

Jewellery vouchers are a quick and imple gift that can be sent via email, with no delays.

Most importantly, they give the recipient something to look forward to.

4. Build your customer list

Eyeballs have never been as concentrated online as they are right now. That means you’ve never had a better chance to add to your database through online means, as well as inform and educate your customers.

Are you making the most of it?

"We can take great comfort from history and how we have come out of similar experiences stronger, fitter and wiser."

From content marketing to mailing list incentives, social media communication and loyalty programs, now is the time to get to know your customers – and potential customers – and build your relationship with them.

5. You have time to plan

With your customers shopping online, you have time to plan.

It is right now, when you may be without interruption and daily in-store firefighting, that is the best time to think ahead – be it one year, five years or 10 years.

Take advantage of this opportunity to crunch the numbers, refine your mission statement, and set goals.

6. Adjust your perspective

Remember that, on a broader scale, we will emerge from this crisis stronger and leaner than we were before.

Every backward step that humanity has ever taken – from wars to droughts, floods, plagues, and economic collapse – has been followed by a climb to new heights, to a level that we had never been able to achieve before.

Our standard of living is so far ahead of what our grandparents or great-grandparents encountered that if they stood before us today, they would not believe what they see around them.

The average small-town family lives at a level that royalty could not have achieved a century ago.

One disease, as challenging as it might seem right now, will not halt us from this progress for long. The future is bright for those who accept and embrace it.

Those who are smart will benefit at the expense of those who aren’t. Some will suffer, but many will make their fortunes as others have done before them in times like this.

Decide where you stand. Decide which way the chips will fall.

We may not control what this virus does, or the steps that have been taken to combat it, but we do control how we react and what will happen to us as a result.

David Brown

Contributor • Retail Edge Consultants

David Brown is co-founder and business mentor with Retail Edge Consultants. Learn more:

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