Find out how SMEs like you are responding to coronavirus
There is no playbook for how businesses throughout the UK should be responding to coronavirus, we're in uncharted territory. However, hearing from people like you can help in achieving clarity and reaching that all-important decision-making point. See how leaders are responding in creative and decisive ways below.
Cube Video: We’re thinking about what we can provide to existing customers
As the CEO of a business which largely depends on site visits to deliver its finished product, James Hakesley has focused on adapting the company's service and offering. He's spoken with clients about repackaging existing work or offering them remote services such as 2D and 3D animation.
Playdale Playgrounds: We activated our business disaster recovery plan
Playdale Playgrounds CEO Barry Leahey MBE explains how he and his team have been reacting to the coronavirus update – from ensuring staff are looked after to making sure they have clarity on numbers to put plans and actions into place.
Pink Spaghetti: A new 90-day plan for my franchisees
Vicky Matthews is the co-founder of Pink Spaghetti, a 45-strong network of franchisees providing PA services. Alongside a more specific 90-day plan for each of her franchisees, Vicky is also focusing on building virtual networks, making sure customer communication does not drop away and paying attention to where new business opportunities may lie.
Distract: We've created three different cash flow forecasts
Find out why Peter Watson, MD at Distract, prioritised running three different cash flow forecasts, based on a worst case scenario, the expected and a best case scenario, when the coronavirus outbreak started to take hold. That process helped create three action plans to direct future decision making.
SmartWisdom: The approach taken by a sole trader
When coronavirus hit, business for Jonathan Kemp went clean out the window for the foreseeable future. Undeterred, Jonathan has decided to, rather than feel sorry for himself, create a monthly plan that helps direct new thinking – including an 80 per cent discount on his SmartWisdom product.
David Keene: Basing our business response on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
Here David Keene from Funding Options describes the employer's challenge of how to meet Maslow's five fundamental human needs when employees are all working remotely: physical needs, the need for security, the need for belonging, the need for self-esteem and personal fulfilment. Some are harder than others.
Bluebell Fitted Furniture: Putting our recession learnings into practice
While Mike Reuben and his wife never for one minute expected the global recession to be a dress rehearsal for the stresses and strains their business is now going through as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, they are not forgetting that experience. From having up to date cash flow projections to taking proactive steps and not burying their heads in the ground, Mike share's his thoughts on what fellow leaders should be doing right now.
Softer Success: Thinking about employee and leader wellbeing
As a business set up to improve employee wellbeing and prevent burnout, Softer Success is now looking at both sides of the coin. Led by CEO Cara de Lange, the company is being very open and supportive to its team and working quickly to make products and services current and available online.
BigChange: I've cut £250,000 off our monthly spend
With a workforce of over 150 people, Martin Port knew he needed to get monthly outgoings under control quickly once the impact of coronavirus became apparent. Reducing executive wages, eliminating "nice to haves" and streamlining have helped achieve this, and now BigChange is looking at how it can continue to win new business whilst operating remotely.
Silverbean and AGY47: The best thing we did was create a live forecasting sheet
Neil Robbins and his team at Silverbean and AGY47, two digital marketing businesses, started scenario mapping very early on in the coronavirus outbreak. However, with those quickly becoming obsolete, find out how a live forecasting sheet created by Neil's head of finance has quickly become an indispensable asset in the decision-making process.
The Translation People: Adapting to where our offering is in demand
The Translation People provides services that span remote working and face-to-face interactions. With the coronavirus pandemic leading to cancelled or postponed events and curtailed business travel, the business has moved quickly to communicate with customers and meet a rising demand for translation work that can be completed by its remote workforce. Jasmin Schneider goes into more detail about the company's strategy.
Istoria Group: Ensuring lines of communication to senior team remain open
As the leader at the helm of a 75-person strong business, Istoria Group CEO Sam Rowe has paid particular attention to communication in the new remote world the business finds itself in. When staff need access to a senior member of the company, Sam has made sure that is easy to do – providing much needed clarity and confidence to the team.
Popcorn Shed: Switching from B2B sales to a direct-to-consumer approach
When coronavirus cut off the carefully cultivated retail and distributor sales routes Sam Feller and Popcorn Shed had generated the, business had to think differently. After careful consideration, the decision was taken to prioritise building out the brand's direct-to-consumer sales channel. Find out how and why.
UPDATE – Cube Video: You need to be reactive to what your customers might be in need of right now
From re-engaging its newsletter database to running a feedback project using Google Forms, Cube Video has used the disruption caused by the coronavirus outbreak to think creatively and look for new revenue streams. CEO James Hakesley describes how a proactive approach has helped win business from existing customers and tempted new ones with services relevant for the current business environment.
UPDATE – Istoria Group: Getting confidence from prudence
The global events industry is one of the hardest hit by coronavirus cancellations, but Istoria Group is confident about the future. Sam Rowe talks to us about prudence and strategic delays.
UPDATE – Playdale Playgrounds: Risk assessments and re-engineered processes – getting back to work safely
Playdale Playgrounds MD Barry Leahey explains the steps the business has taken to ensure its employees can return from furlough and get working in a gradual and safe way.