As small business owners, we spend time most of our time in our business. We work at getting clients wherever we can, but most of our time is spent doing the work that we have already contracted to do, so often the marketing, the brand building and the way we present in the marketplace gets sidelined. Enter COVID-19. All of a sudden, we are brought to a screeching halt, with work getting postponed or cancelled, and no idea how to move forward because the timeline for this is so murky. Let us not forget that the only thing we can ever really control in our lives is our response to what happens to us. Reacting to this in fear or despair is one response, but it is obviously not the best one. We want to proactively choose our response, making the best of a difficult situation, and be productive and positive. After all, we can’t change it, right?
We can still interact with one another and do business together in small groups. We can still meet one on one. I still have head shots and business marketing photos that have not been cancelled because we can still pursue these types of things. I can still schedule shoots where there are few people involved, in a home or at a business…these are the kinds of things that owners put on the back burner. What are those things that you can still do to help clients in our present situation? How can you reach out to get more current work, or set yourself up for future work? What problems can your business solve for others? Time to be creative.
One possible silver lining to this debacle is that it enables us to spend some time to work ON our business, to think about where we are headed, touch those aspects of our businesses that are always waiting in the wings, and regroup. It gives us time to slow down a bit and decide what is really important. The first and most obvious consideration is that this is tax time, and most of us scramble trying to get everything together for the accountant.
The other obvious answer is to spend some time focusing on things that routinely get dropped. Marketing. Having the conversations that build future work. Reminding folks that we are still here, and connecting with new people so that, when this has passed, and it will, we come out of the gate stronger than we have ever been before.
Finally, let us not forget that this gives us a perfect opportunity to spend some time with family, to get some much needed rest, to take a walk or read a book. All of these will ultimately make us stronger and better people, ready to go back to the world refreshed, and ready to do business. Do your best to keep a positive perspective through this, and focus on what you can do rather than what you can’t. Either way, life is a challenge right now, but the results will always be better with a positive perspective.