Are you ready for the Corona Comeback?
Well, what a month March has been!
I started 2020 wanting it to be a better year than 2019, which was a bit of a challenging one personally for me. After a very productive January, unfortunately the rest of 2020 has not lived up to the hopes I had been holding.
I think it’s easy to get trapped in a mindset that everything is going wrong and that that’s the way it’s going to be. Both personally and professionally I try hard to focus on what I can do in moments of negativity or madness; and quite frankly there is no madder situation that the one we find ourselves in today! This doesn’t mean pretending everything is perfect – give yourself time to process and feel sad about any worries or concerns- just don’t dwell on them.
I have seen small businesses turn a lifetime of face-to-face practices into online offerings in days, entrepreneurs utilise their skills in the most commendable ways to support others; and positivity shared nationwide. I don’t think anyone’s living their best life right now- and we don’t have to pretend to be. But there is solace and opportunity and talking and preparing for when normality returns.
So this month’s blog is championing what you can be doing to get ready for the inevitable Corona Comeback; personally and professionally! Are you ready? And a little shout out along the way to some fab small businesses who can help you prepare for an almighty comeback (directory of contact details at the end of this blog).
Success is in the preparation…
A lot of small business owners have some downtime on their hands right now. Whilst I completely appreciate that this can feel deflating; success is in the preparation! For many that I am talking to they are as busy, if not busier, utilising their time or testing out online business alternatives.
Plan for tomorrow, by acting today!
Tiba Al-Khalidy hosts several fantastic training on developing entrepreneurial skills and more. Perfect for developing a skills set ideal for business planning.
And this doesn’t just apply to business preparation.
Do you have an event coming up that could do with a little extra TLC. A wedding planned for a couple of years time in need of a think through or honeymoon planning? If you do have more time on your hands at the moment, or are looking for a way to escape your four walls, planning a future event can be just the uplifting thing you need- something to look forward to!
If you’re looking to plan for the Corona-Comeback holiday of a lifetime or want to brainstorm honeymoon ideas, give Sarah Coombes (an amazing travel consultant) a call.
Work out your money!
Times are tough financially – and that’s no underestimate.
But this time can be really good for re-educating yourself money wise; be it finding out more about how to manage your money or developing your knowledge of financial systems that can help with your business finances and planning.
Chris Evans, of Kingston Burrows Accountants, is hosting a number of online and phone training sessions on financial accounting systems so that you can spend this time developing and growing.
If your looking for ways to manage your personal finances better, and to plan that family/ retirement budget, Michael Bowers is also on hand with high quality financial advice.
Have you been wanting to sharpen up your skills?
Well if you have more time on your hands than you are used to, now could be the time to get started. Or, if you are needing an escape from home-working and home-schooling (yes please!) then getting lost in a new skill or hobby could be just the thing you need.
I personally completed a BA Business Management degree with The Open University, and it is one of my greatest achievements to date. Distance learning is fab (and completely in compliance with COVID-19 restrictions!). But Open University courses do not come cheap – and if you are looking for more affordable options check out OpenLearn (free courses run by the Open University).
Another great option for skills development is to seek training from other professionals. Remember I mentioned earlier that Tiba Al-Khalidy is offering Business Skills for Entrepreneurs training; a fantastic way to get your head around the current situation and how to survive your way through.
Or maybe you’re happy with where you are skills wise, but need a better way of selling yourself? Emma Jones from WorkBuddy Coaching is a CV genius and the go-to for help and advice on how to make sure your CV and LinkedIn profile reflects you! Keep an eye out for guides and many other amazing downloads on her website.
Business Development and promotion
Are you promoting you? Make sure you keep a foot in the door with your audience! You may not be able to physically trade right now, but you can still communicate with your clients and market.
Social media, online directories, eNewsletters – there are so many ways to develop your business strategies in the face of adversity (I'm here to help if you need me).
Are you local to Epsom – check out the Epsom and Ewell Families directory (they have a very good virtual assistant & social media consultant loaded 😉 ) - https://epsomandewellfamilies.co.uk/team/sophie-eastop-scopes-virtual-assistant/
Devenia Besant is on hand to answer your directory questions and increase your local online presence!
And it’s not just organising your strategies that’s useful currently; what about organising your systems and getting a handle on your admin? Take the time when everything slows down to be prepared for when everything speeds up again. Nicola Laurie (Ms Tidy Owl) is a spreadsheet and systems wizard who can organise your systems, admin and more.
And it’s not just your systems you can get lockdown ready…
Is your home lock down ready?
You are going to be spending a LOT of time indoors right now! And there is nothing more eye-opening than seeing how your home works when you are stuck indoors!
I’ve been following George (Simplify By George) for a while now, and her tips for organisation are amazing! She is also offering virtual organisation sessions which is a fab way to get your home in order.
One thing I have heard a lot is about the sudden need to have an office space at home from the increase of homeworkers. Whilst I’ve been set up virtually from home for a while, I know for many it is a daunting and hugely demanding process. Enter the interior angel that is Claire Duncan; an amazingly talented interior designer currently offering help in designing your home offices to make sure they are practical, whilst being stylish.
If you must be stuck inside, do it in style!
Or maybe this time indoors has highlighted too many faults and given you the kick needed to investigate moving. Sacha Scott Estate and Lettings Agents are doing online, virtual tours of properties! It’s SO cool and means that if you’re selling or looking to buy/ let you can keep a foot in the door of the market whilst keeping your own feet firmly indoors.
Take time for you!
For many, their whole lives have changed. And whilst we must remember that lockdowns and home-schooling are temporary, the circumstances of this are unknown. Therefore, it’s important to remember to look after yourself.
This can also be a confusing time for children- having their weekly routines completely uprooted; and most probably having to deal with wine-fuelled, tired teacher-parents.
If you’re in need of a chat and some much-needed attention, give Christine Murray a call.
When looking at school books, to-do lists and cancelled bookings the tendency to feel overwhelmed is immense. But there is an opportunity personally to make some unforgettable memories.
How often do we get time to literally be locked in together with the people with live with? I’m not sure about you, but sometimes me and my husband are like passing ships in the night; and my grasp on my son’s education is from small conversations on the way home or homework.
We have an opportunity to find out more. To have fun together, to protect each other and to make some memories.
I started Alfie with a Tot Bop dance class last week (another fab small business which has transitioned to being online amazingly!) and my word! The laughs we’ve had as mummy tries to replicate the dance moves! It’s these moments, that no matter what is going on outside in the big bad world; inside we are safe, happy and making the most of it.
The world may have paused, but you don’t have to.
Personal and professional development can continue; and supporting small businesses is a must. That doesn’t mean you have to get yourself into debt buying from everywhere local; but it does mean that any extra effort you can make is vital; be that sharing a social media post, recommending to a friend or checking up on how they are – supporting each other can be completely free and yet mean the world.
Hoping everyone is well and staying safe x
Small businesses mentioned in this blog
(Alphabetical order based on first name):
Kingston Burrowes Accountants
Epsom and Ewell Families Directory
Work Buddy Coaching
Simplify by George
Director at Aspen Financial Services
Ms Tidy Owl
Sacha, Judi and Scott
Sacha Scott Estate and Lettings
Virtual Assistant, Social Media Consultant and Marketing
Business and Growth Coach – A – Z Business Growth Academy
Tot Bop - Online dance classes for 1-7 year olds