It’s grey and pouring with rain as I sit to write this blog post……..
The news is awful, finances are difficult, anxiety is high, and the weather is dreary.
The perfect set of ingredients to make you believe your business is bound to suffer. Surely, no one is willing to spend on frivolous items in the current climate?
In these trying times, here are some tips on how to deal with doom and gloom:
Tell yourself over and over how bad things are, how worried you are and your mindset will suffer. You will become negative and believe that the worst is about to happen. How are you going to build the strength and resilience to keep going, keep up your energy and keep focusing on your goals with such a mindset?
Whatever it takes to stop the negative chatter, do that. Whether that is escaping the work environment for a bit, taking some me-time, a walk in nature, playing with the dog, seeking out positive friends and acquaintances – make time to improve your mindset.
Positivity breeds positivity – it’s hard at times, but become a beacon in these dark times and you will reap rewards from those that are seeking some relief from the doom and gloom.
Stop listening to the news
How would a good news station fair in this world? Wouldn’t it be wonderful to tune in and listen to heart-warming, uplifting and motivating news. Since that doesn’t seem to exist, except in the odd podcast, you may wish to stop listening to the news.
For 10 years we didn’t have a TV as our kids were growing up. News was always delivered via radio and I’ve never gone back to TV news since. The radio news is not more positive at the moment sadly, but it does seem less sensational, without all the visual images that are so disturbing. If you are finding it difficult at the moment, a sabbatical from the news could be a good place to start.
People need cheering up more than ever
There is no doubt about it, many people will not be spending on extras at the moment as the cost-of-living crisis is very real. Some will still want to buy a treat, even if they treat themselves less often. There are still birthdays and special occasions, Christmas do’s etc. Providing something fun and distracting for your clients right now is just what they need. You are not just providing an experience or product, you are providing as escape, some fun, some therapy, a distraction.
If what you provide will make people feel better, be proud to shout about this as it’s just what’s needed right now.
Deliver the best experience possible
This is my mantra. When I train people on how to run their own workshops where they live, I can’t express enough the need to go above and beyond people’s expectations and deliver something to the absolute best of your ability. Focusing on the customer journey, their experience with you from the moment they interact with you to the moment that’s over. Your attitude, your willingness, your gratefulness and your understanding are key to making good relationships with your clients.
A small business owner has a unique opportunity to stand out at the moment and really make a difference. If a client is buying fewer things, then those things that they do decide to buy really matter. It’s not just a case of that will do, they want the absolute best for their money.
Don’t stop doing the important things
If you believe that people are not able to pay for what you have, and you stop talking to your clients then your business will suffer. Marketing matters, in difficult times more than ever. Keep in touch. You may receive more no’s than usual, don’t take it to heart, but understand that it’s a ‘not right now’ for some clients. They know you are still going and trying hard to make it work. They may recommend you to a friend, or when times are better, be looking forward to using your services or buying your product again.
How can you ride the storm?
Think about ways to ride the storm, could that be an additional part-time job to help with cash-flow for example?
It feels like a lot of energy after the pandemic to find even more creative ways to keep afloat. It may be time to say goodbye, but remember to focus on your reasons for starting the business, and why you became your own boss in the first instance. If that is still as strong as ever, it’s time to get creative to save your business baby and work on a strategy to ride the storm and emerge stronger and better than before.
Be kind to yourself and those in the world around you. People are stressed and worried and we never know their whole story. Small acts of kindness go a long way. Here’s a lovely article from The Guardian from a recent Kindness Study. The conclusion encourages all of us to do more – it will make you feel better as well as the recipient.