As the world continues to reopen, business strategies come into the picture: they allow businesses to meet the shifted needs of employees and customers. In addition, these business strategies help answer questions that are top of mind for organizations everywhere.
However, some transitions may be challenging to navigate in the new normal workplace. Here are four business strategies from successful business leaders who offer their insights on how to tackle post-COVID challenges.
4 Business Strategies by Successful Business Leaders
2020 saw business leaders making unprecedented changes out of necessity to keep their teams safe and their operations afloat. But after almost two years of this new economy, 2021 is about examining which measures should become permanent business strategies.
More business leaders are optimistic about the future of their industries and companies than they have been in 11 years, according to a recent survey from JP Morgan Chase.
You, too, can strengthen your business before the year ends if you follow the following business strategies shared by famous business leaders:
1. Return to Office: Emphasize Safety and Comfort
Making customers and employees feel safe is definitely one of the business strategies all industries have implemented since the pandemic started. This continues to be top-of-mind as anxieties about the coronavirus and its variants are still widespread, especially with the return to office after COVID.
Even when taking precautions, not all employees might feel safe returning to the office.
As a result, according to the 2021 People Management Report:
- 46% of companies have adopted fully remote or hybrid work models
- another 68% of organizations plan to implement a hybrid policy moving forward
Teresha Aird, co-founder, and CMO of Offices.net, found that to be the best way to support her team:
“We wanted to make our team feel supported, safe and comfortable […] we have switched to a permanent hybrid model that allows employees to either work remote or in-house, depending on their own preference.”
“We made a point to discuss this change with all employees prior to settling on it, while also taking time to outline that no preferential treatment will be given to employees who return to the office after COVID,” she explains.
What other precautions are businesses taking?
- 83% of businesses are investing more into office cleaning and safety protocols
- 63% make sure the office is cleaned several times daily
- 34% hire both janitorial staff and CDC-approved cleaning services for maximum safety
Safety and comfort are amazing business strategies to make employees and customers happy.
2. Retool Your Culture to Retain Talent
Research shows that 41% of the global workforce will consider leaving their current employer within the next year, Microsoft’s 2021 Work Trend Index reports. That’s not surprising, according to a survey by Robert Half, with more than 4 in 10 professionals reporting they are more burned out on the job today compared to a year ago.
Amid these trends, revisiting your company culture is one of the most important business strategies, no matter your business size. The goal is to adopt values that emphasize employee well-being and camaraderie.
As Nelson Sherwin, the manager of PEO Companies, points out, “This pandemic has taken a toll on our collective mental health, but there are steps we can take to improve these outcomes moving forward.”
Explains Sherwin, “I think it’s important as a manager to have conversations with my team to discuss their well-being and ask what I can do better to support them.”
“Improving connections is another way I can address mental health in the workplace culture, so I’ve initiated team-building exercises and social events to help rebuild relationships that were lost in the remote setting.”
Business Development Strategy: Actionable Steps
Here are some simple business strategies you can take, according to the communication experts at 4PSA. These business strategies will allow you to boost employee morale as you reimagine your company culture for the new economy:
- Run meetings more efficiently and block out meeting-free times throughout the week.
- Empower managers to act on feedback from their direct reports to build a culture where each team member feels welcome to voice their ideas.
- Encourage employees to take regular breaks, such as an actual lunch break instead of just eating at their desks due to pressure to be “always on.”
- Show appreciation for team members and the value they provide regularly.
3. Invest in New Digital and Ecommerce Capabilities
Technology continues to be one of the essential business strategies, especially now that we enter the waning days of the pandemic and beyond.
In fact, more than three-quarters of business leaders feel that digital innovation helped their company survive pandemic challenges, Deloitte reports. Moreover, the last two years normalized many tech advancements, from Zoom meetings to cloud-based collaboration software.
But it’s also important to think outside these more obvious tools and platforms.
Deloitte recommends the adoption of digital capabilities that will make your business processes scalable, nimble, and stable as rapid changes occur.
For Tim O’Brien, founder of The Healthy Place, his business strategies meant seamlessly incorporating new e-commerce features to maintain a solid virtual presence and accommodate shifting business models during this period of change.
“Right before the pandemic started, my team and I spruced up our e-commerce site, then hired an agency to help us sell vitamins and supplements online. We now take phone and internet orders, and we offer live chat on our website,” said O’Brien.
“These were smart initiatives because, while our in-person sales tanked, our website sales increased by 400%.”
Business Growth Strategies: What Tools Can You Add?
It all depends on what type of business you run, your needs, and what types of customers you have.
What business strategies did O-Brien implement?
“I also went to town on my website to add touchless services and consultations, such as curbside pick-up, same-day delivery in the U.S., and free shipping elsewhere.”
“In addition, we assembled multiple content writers for our web pages, a photographer for our products, a videographer to help us produce more videos, and an inventory manager to choose the list of national products for our site.”
As you can see, O-Brien went all-in when it comes to offering alternatives to their clients and strengthening their marketing because that’s what works for him and his clients.
You should evaluate what business strategies already work for you and find tools that allow you to maximize your processes.
4. Listen to Customers’ Shifting Needs and Expectations
Almost half of the surveyed consumers in the U.S. have started or increased purchasing from a business because of trust, according to recent research by PwC. In the report, it was found that consumers base their trust on factors such as:
- clear and authentic communication
- willingness to admit and resolve mistakes
- consistent customer service
In this increasingly online business landscape, customers still expect companies to make them feel valued with personalized, authentic interactions—even over the screen.
Your business strategies need to focus on your clients.
So, to retain your current customers as well as acquire new ones, it’s vital to meet these expectations at all touchpoints of the customer journey.
Sandeepan Jindal, founder of BidFortune, understands just how crucial this is. “We avoid unrealistic customer expectations by making sure that our representatives maintain open and honest communication.”
Business Competition Strategies: Take a Note from your Competitors
Jindal also adds that it’s essential to research the customer service practices of your competitors. “The public’s expectations of an organization are also based in part on what competitors are doing.”
“Therefore, we stay on top of our competitors’ customer service in order to re-evaluate our own strategies,” he says.
Create Your Small Business Strategy in the New Economy for 2021 and Beyond
The new economy that’s taking shape in the aftermath of COVID-19 will change business norms well into the future. This makes it vital to have a clear small business strategy in place informed by current trends and evolving needs.
From changes to office safety policies and company values to advancements in technology and customer experience, these leaders’ business strategies offer some insightful ideas for businesses of all sizes as they plan for 2021 and the years to come.
80% of business leaders believe their sales and revenue will increase in the final months of 2021, according to JP Morgan Chase.
If you’re looking to invest in enhancements for your own business, Camino Financial is here for you with simple, easy small business loans.
With our motto, “no business left behind,” you can be sure you have a partner to help support your business as you move forward into the new post-pandemic economy.Apply now!