2020 came with its fair share of surprises. Not only was the world at a standstill because of Covid-19 rampaging our countries and communities, but the ripple effect of shutting down all activities all over the world is now being felt as many economies slip into recession and many more barely hold on. One thing that has managed to surprise everyone is the fact that despite the hardship and economic downslide, some young entrepreneurs seem to have it all under control and are running thriving businesses.
Falling demand, reduced spending on nonessential things, and stay-at-home curfews mandating that certain businesses remain closed have certainly taken their toll on many companies. Big names in the business world continue to close down stores or, worse, file for bankruptcy. It is, therefore, a big surprise that some young entrepreneurs have discovered the secret to thriving in these difficult times and are using it to successfully run their businesses.
If these people really have mastered the art of business survival in difficult times, then they must be doing something that the rest of the world is not privy to. Well, not really. They have just realized that the playing field in the business world is not level and have come up with ways to level it. Don’t forget that many entrepreneurs took a break from work-related activities during the mandatory lockdown. Who could blame them? Nobody knew what the future would hold.
According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, startups are the key drivers of the economy, employing about 50% of the workforce at any given time, even though they are about 20% of the total companies in a country. It is apparent that without startups’ and young entrepreneurs’ innovation and forward-thinking, the economy will suffer. Productivity and growth will be greatly reduced, and an already difficult economy will become even more so.
Forward-thinking young entrepreneurs did not take this beat down, however, and saw it as an opportunity to play in the big leagues while some professionals went to sleep. With hard work and the right strategy, companies such as Cleancult, which manufactures lemongrass soaps and orange zest cleaners, or Kudo, the multilingual conferencing app, have seen a huge increase in their sales. What the young entrepreneurs whose businesses are thriving during this pandemic have done is reacted quickly, adapted to the changing times, and laid out a strategy to be relevant in a time when not much is.
As part of these young entrepreneurs’ strategies, they have come up with businesses that are vital in helping many countries make the shift from old norms toward fully digitalized services, such as innovations in the health and education sector. During the pandemic, these young entrepreneurs have continued to act as a cushion for the economy, coming up with new ways of doing things. However, we must look beyond the present. How do these young entrepreneurs ensure the survival of their companies in the years to come? How do they surpass the proverbial five-year mark in their businesses? Here are some ways:
- Staying Relevant
Relevance is one of the most important factors to consider in business. If your business is no longer relevant to the consumer, then it is time to change it up. While the manufacturers of toilet paper may have witnessed an unbelievable surge in sales during the “toilet paper paranoia” early this year, everything has started to go back to normal as people realize that toilet paper isn’t such a big deal. Manufacturers of toilet paper, therefore, should not expect the same surge in sales as they did a couple of months ago. It may be time to restrategize and ensure that they stay relevant after Covid-19.
- Having A Fresh Approach
Business is very tricky, and there is no exact formula to guarantee a startup. A young entrepreneur who started thriving during the pandemic may have put in place strategies to have a presence amid all the confusion. However, moving forward, these startups need a fresh approach to accommodate their companies not just for the rest of the pandemic, but also after the dust has settled. The design, culture, and ways of business have to adapt if it is to survive the five-year mark.
- Meeting Customers' Current Needs
Right now, most consumers of products and services are stuck at home because of the pandemic. These young entrepreneurs have found a way to reach out and make sure their products and services are being used even if they cannot physically see the customers. The same thing has to be done in business moving forward. Startups have to meet the needs of their customers and actively involve them in decision-making about the company. Going forward, businesses must take care of customers’ current needs and be ready to change up when those needs change.
- Ditching Out-Of-Date Information
This is the perfect time for a young entrepreneur to take a step back and take a long, hard look at their business. Are there any services that need to be added or removed? Are there outdated approaches that will not work after Covid-19? Are there systems currently in place that may need to change during the coming years? All these questions should be asked and answered by a young entrepreneur to help their business grow. Also, customers must be actively involved in all change processes. Information on new products and services or the cancellation of old ones must be disseminated to customers promptly. Newly added products and services must also be announced to customers, or they may get discouraged about the change and move on to other prospects.