Once the lockdown is in place things may become less frenetic for businesses outside of the designated essential services and now may be the best time for franchisors and franchisees to take stock of their business.
According to Vera Valasis, FASA’s Executive Director “many business owners instinctively know which areas of their business they need to focus on or look for solutions to problems but probably have just not had the time to sit down and formulate a new strategy or look for expert input and advice but now is the time to address these concerns – and start strategizing on the opportunities post-COVID-19.”
Zoom and Skype have posted information on improved service offerings so grab the opportunity to arrange virtual meetings with your team and expert outsiders to host strategic sessions.
Get all the work done that ’no one’ has had time for and address those jobs that have been put on the back burner ‘for when there is time’. For example, check procedural and operational training manuals for improvements and discuss your needs and ideas with your team and expert service providers offering a virtual solution to franchise companies.
For small business owners, it is important to be empathetic and be there for customers and employees during this trying time.
Here are 5 business management tips from Minuteman Press in the USA to provide customer service in times of crisis:
1. Reach out to your clients and simply let them know you care and are there for them
During this trying time, it is important to let your clients see the human side of you. Hopefully, you have already built strong, trusting relationships and by simply reaching out to them in an honest and heartfelt manner, they will appreciate the sentiment and it can lead to further bonding as people, not just business.
2. Reassure your clients you are following all recommended safety guidelines
Make sure you keep your clients informed about your business and what you are doing to make sure you are following all government guidelines. Let them know exactly what you are doing and share with them any important tips and reminders you have for them to stay safe.
3. Be prepared to do business differently and accommodate their needs
Right now, it is simply not business as usual. For those clients who do reach out to you and need your help with products and services, it is important to be prepared to meet their needs in the future – even if you have to do things differently.
4. Continue to give back in a way that is safe and follows safety guidelines
If you are active in your community and would like to continue being involved, think of ways you or your business can help those in your area during this time. It could be something as simple as donating to a reputable local charity to provide meals to those in need or using your professional skills to offer other kinds of assistance.
5. Stay in touch and make clients aware of any updates and business changes
As this is a rapidly changing situation, it is important to make sure your clients have the most up to date information. You don’t want to inundate them with items that are not helpful, but whenever things do change you want to make sure they are informed and know how to best contact you and do business with you.