Are you waiting for things to “get better”? I’m not. And your competition probably isn’t either.
I posted a bit back about “Clarity in an Unclear Year” where I mentioned if you are still surviving, things look good. But that does not mean you can sit on your hands either.
I’m no medical expert, but it’s clear to me that we’re going to be in flux for a while, and the only way to ensure you come out the other side ok is to adapt to what is (instead of getting upset over what isn’t).
So let me talk about something that I see right now as a key differentiator in companies: adapting your business to still provide service. Particularly good service.
I’m seeing it a lot now: since Covid-19, service in a lot of industries has gone down. Some of this cannot be helped: if you are restricted from doing business normally, it’s hard to keep up the same level of service as you did prior, at least in the beginning.
But it puzzles me to see companies completely drop the ball and let their competition in the door.
A month ago, I called my locally owned pet store to see if I could do curbside pickup. They were closed (at 2pm on a Wednesday). Reason? Wednesday is a slow day for them anyway, so in Covid-19 with nothing but curbside pickup, they think there’s no sense being open on Wednesday. I got my dog food at a chain instead. Nice store, too – I’ll probably go back.
Some companies could not shift all that fast to work-at-home, and have let their phone service really slack. This isn’t anything a good telecom provider can’t fix (and we finance telecom equipment), but companies are reluctant to make any investment right now. That’s their right of course, but I guarantee someone else IS making the investment, and is going to shine.
I also know a landscaper who is increasing his presence and offerings, and he’s doing well. Reason? More people are home and spending less on “going out”, so they are putting more money into their homes. His competition is moaning the loss of commercial contracts as stores and offices closed, and my friend is now clearing brush away and tilling earth so homeowners can plant a new garden (he calls it his “garden starter” service).
We’re all in the same boat, but some paddle a lot better than others. What is your competition doing?