Life as we know it has completely changed, and we have all been forced into a new normal. There are things we can no longer do, and a lot of things we have to start doing and this process can be hard. To ensure that our businesses stay ahead, it is important that we continue to adapt, innovate and ensure impact.
This article will help you adopt new normal business operations in these times.
Generally, the coronavirus has impacted every business sector, with regard to demand. Some companies in our portfolio are seeing a reduction in demand for their goods and services. On the flip side, some of the other companies in e-learning and telemedicine, are seeing an increase in demand, because the virus is forcing consumer behaviour and adoption of their products and services. However, some companies are still impacted by difficulty in fundraising.
Overall, while this crisis is unfortunate, I believe that it presents some opportunities for the ecosystem, especially one where companies can be nimble, rethink their business models and survive. I believe on the other side of this crisis, there are a lot of opportunities.
Thankfully, there are a few initiatives seeking to help, including some by The Central Bank of Nigeria. We are currently engaging with the officials to try and ensure that start-ups and companies in our industries can qualify and have access to these fundings.
Some companies are actively investing, for instance, Ventures platform is investing particularly in companies that can be resilient in the recession, and companies that can benefit from the increased adoption of technology and tools.
Boosting Employee Productivity
Technology as a whole is about boosting productivity and enabling efficiency. We are seeing that there are a lot of opportunities for using tools that enable remote work. There are also logistic companies for delivery services and people are starting to adopt this technology in many ways.
If you focus on the pandemic, you might miss the opportunities that it creates in terms of forcing user behaviour.
What Change Looks Like
Firstly, I believe because of the shortage of funding and demand, it is really important that you try to control and reduce your costs because startups need to preserve the runway.
Companies will learn to work remotely, even after the lockdown, because they will find many benefits to this model. There will also be changes in consumer behaviour because of the forecast that there might be a recession due to the drop in oil prices and global demand. In this scenario, you will need to figure out how to compete for the share of the wallets of consumers, as people will have to make tough choices on what they spend money on. Figuring out consumer behaviour and observing the buying pattern of people will be very important for companies.
Besides developing new strategies and tools to survive, the CEO’s have to ensure they take care of their mental health. People often forget that the CEO has to be healthy to make good decisions. Finding time to rest, reflect, exercise and understanding that this is a season that will pass, is very crucial. For teams, leaders must stay in touch with their team members and communicate with them as much as they can. Ensuring good mental health and balance is critical at this time.
In summary, there are several ways that businesses can be improved, and maybe even function better this pandemic. All this takes is applying the right strategies.
Kola Aina is an engineer, entrepreneur, and investor. He is passionate about using technology and innovation to solve problems in society and ultimately create prosperity. He is an impact-oriented capitalist and he believes that it is possible to do well and do good at the same time. His prior entrepreneurial experience spans several sectors including venture capital, technology,media, agriculture, infrastructure, publishing and real estate. He is the Founding Partner at Ventures Platform; an early-stage fund that provides founder-friendly, smart capital and growth support in a framework that is buoyed by corporate governance and hands-on support for bold entrepreneurs who are leveraging innovation to solve problems in Africa and around the world.