We’re all wondering “When will this end? When will things get back to normal?”
And because no where on earth has it really done so, no one has the answer, although people have tried to analyse it.
During this pandemic, we are more separated yet in some ways more connected. We all have something big in common – the fight against a global pandemic, and mostly are talking about how it’s affecting us, in life and business. In the last 2 weeks, I’ve had more Zoom calls than I normally have meetings, and that’s saying a lot! While I am not meeting as many new people as I do normally, I am connecting with people I know more than ever.
I am so grateful to be a member of a fantastic peer group of founders called EO (Entrepreneurs Organisation – 14,000 members globally!) and there is so much open sharing and conversation. Through this, I have been immersed in group calls, webinars, Zoom parties, and WhatsApp group chats with many other business founders – all about practical ways to understand what we can about this and how to move forward.
Some of my favourite content so far
- Via EO I was able to view an amazing webinar with open accounts from business owners in China who have gone through all of this process already. It’s been a great preparation for me for what’s to come – I have begun to re-listen to it and they gave permission for us to share.
- One of the EO members in the UK used to run a business there, and wrote an amazing piece of the 4 stages of reaction to the Coronavirus.
- This Facebook live from Gabby Bernstein was a great way to avoid being stuck in a spiral of overwhelm and fear. Since then she’s made many others. Worth checking out!
Situation so far (for me)
After reading news obsessively, and talking to people I know in Italy, and hearing stories from EO people in China, I started to “socially distance” myself on the 12th March as I learned I had a friend who had the coronavirus and I saw her on the 6th.
Since then however, I have had no symptoms so I think I got away with it. I now only see Nina, a friend who is staying with me, and we’re wiping down groceries with antibacterial wipes! If you want to have a proper chat with me and compare notes – I am on WhatsApp, Zoom, email, etc!
I then posted this video on LinkedIn, which has made me feel like I am contributing, and I’ve had 4 initial consultancy calls with business owners who took me up on it, with another 6 booked. This has opened up a lot of interesting discussions!
What’s been going on with others:
From all these calls and the other conversations I have had, I have seen the several patterns emerging, which I have listed below.
- People are on constant Zoom calls for work meetings.
- People are having parties on Zoom, group calls, Facetime, online games, and Houseparty – and connecting more than ever.
- People are struggling with internet connectivity and trying to get their IT to work at home.
- People are figuring out how to work at home with the additional complexity of kids and home-schooling.
- No one knows what to do about the government grant schemes (except the accountants, who are being inundated with questions).
- Despite many businesses having experienced huge losses and overnight changes, the business owners we’ve spoken to are still working – thinking about how to reframe things.
- People are grateful. Everyone we have spoken to has said what they are grateful for (without being prompted!).
- People are following the “stay away from each other” rules – even though it’s hard (side note: We have seen the news that folks aren’t all being compliant, but those we’ve talked to are being diligent!).
- We all have dry hands from washing them so much. Well, mine less so today due to moisturising!
- People are appreciating time to settle, to connect, to think, to review.
What’s been happening with our projects?
Project wise, we’ve had a few clients, thankfully, want to keep forging on with projects and some have even initiated new projects:
- One client is finally going to be able to put his own thinking time into a much overdue new site for a new re-brand and launch in September.
- Another is using this enforced “downtime” to get their compliance communications right, while maintaining brand awareness.
- Our florist client has made a little movie about the things she and her team are doing with their leftover flowers, aside from making deliveries to nominated “heroes” in their neighbourhood.
- Another has begun a new initiative where he’s giving away free masks to those ordering contactless clear out services. See his post about it here.
- One of my clients works at a new company and she shared their amazing and motivating week 1 team Zoom meeting, you can see it here.
- A few others are just softening on the projects and instead are reviewing their messaging, considering new angles, taking up training, while adapting it to this new way of life.
So much uncertainty
We’ve also seen many stories of revenue streams pretty much disappearing overnight. A couple of our clients have had to halt their projects because of what’s happened. We are in discussions with them and others on how to use their skills in a different way.
And, as usual, I am actively talking to people about projects and support to help keep me and the talented TLD team occupied. We’ve created the TLD Coronavirus Marketing Relief Packages, which are designed to help other small businesses and business owners keep a strong voice out there.
We want to help others to be seen as helpful, resourceful and innovative during this time. So, we are offering free of charge consultancy on how they would do this. See this video for more information (this time on Instagram!)
As always we are here for you and are always ready to chat. Good luck, stay safe, stay sane, and stay in touch – from me and the TLD team.