As the coronavirus continues its global spread, doctors and countries alike have recommended social distancing strategies. They also recommend quarantine and discourage people from spending too much time in crowds.
Yet this poses a unique challenge to many businesses. How can business continue if employees and customers have to stay home? Can business continue even during this time of uncertainty?
The answer, for most businesses is “yes.” Will your business continue in the same way? Most likely not. However, there are several ways to work with this new set of practices including social distancing without losing more business. Here are four strategies that do make a difference.
Social Distancing Strategies Number One: Adjust Work Arrangements
Since social distancing is highly recommended, make sure to encourage your staff to work from home as much as possible. Then sanitize the office and offer flexible working hours. If most of your employees already have desk jobs or work from the computer, ask them to prioritize that work at home rather than in office where there is a higher likelihood of getting other people sick. Conduct meetings over Zoom. If you have to work in office, try to set things up in such a way that people are a minimum of six to eight feet apart. Try to eliminate the possibility of transmission as much as possible.
If your managers have not led remote workers before, the management skills they use in the office do need to be improved a notch or two. There are multiple training platforms that can be accessed on line. You can click here to learn more about remote worker manager training offered by TIGERS® Success Series.
Social Distancing Strategies Number Two: Increase Communication
Given the technological infrastructure that most companies utilize, try to keep up your communication with employees and managers. The way to do this is through online chat platforms, project management dashboards and anything based on the cloud. If emails and chat rooms are just not cutting it, set up a zoom meeting before attempting anything in person.
Especially with the uncertainty that many people are feeling now regarding their jobs, anxiety, and distancing, make it a priority to check in on your team members. What can you and the team do during this time to make everything more positive and pleasant? How can you help your employees feel safe and secure in their jobs? Be sure to communicate any thoughts you have on the subject.
Social Distancing Strategies Number Three: Deploy Technology
Now is the perfect opportunity to hone your online presence. If you were never on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or even a website, now is the time to get those started. With quarantine and social distancing, many people are turning to their social media to check out what is going on and what different businesses offer. Send out emails asking your clients to leave your company a good review. You can also offer an online promotion or provide the option of gift cards available for in store and online use. Although these are pretty small strategies, they make a difference and encourage a steady flow of income during this time.
Social Distancing Strategies Number Four: Offer Virtual Assistance and Curbside Pick-Up
Many people are afraid to leave their homes, meet with friends, or visit local businesses to do their usual shopping. Make this a little easier for them by offering virtual assistance, phone orders, and curbside pick-up. If customers have questions or are hesitant to come to your business, be sure to remind them that you would be more than happy to chat with them over the phone or Skype. Did you help them find something they wanted? Offer to mail it, deliver it, or have it readily available for them to drive up to your storefront to pick up the product. It can make all the difference!
What are some ways your business has been adjusting to working with the constrictions of the coronavirus? Leave a comment below to help fellow business owners find new ideas and learn more about how to thrive during this time!
Want more social distancing strategies?
The following resources provide additional information:
- The TIGERS Newsletter: Subscribe to the newsletter for the six part series of leading and developing remote teams.
- TIGERS Remote Worker Company Group Norm Facilitation contact for more information.
- How to Protect Your Small Business in the Midst of the Coronavirus Outbreak
- Here’s How to Support Local Businesses During the Coronavirus Pandemic
- A Coronavirus Strategic Plan – 5 Ways to Make it Happen in a Business
- How Businesses Should Handle the Coronavirus Outbreak
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