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5 ways to establish a new normal after COVID-19May 14th, 2020 by
Where does the world go from here? COVID-19 has changed our economy and the way we conduct business for the foreseeable future. Interactions will not return to normal immediately. If a business wants to survive, it must establish a new normal and find a way forward.
Thankfully, companies will begin reopening in the coming weeks and we will start finding a routine again. As a business owner, it’s important to use this time to build trust with customers and employees by taking extra precautions. Check out our 5 ways to establish a new normal after COVID-19.
1. Announce changes immediately
Before you reopen or return to full strength, it’s important to address changes immediately with your employees. They should be made aware of any policies that have changed, new policies and processes that have been put in place, and updated workplace standards. Set new expectations for updated processes and reiterate expectations that will remain the same.
Your team should be on the same page when it comes to working directly with clients and what they can and cannot do. Having rules in place will help your team feel safer about client interactions. Understanding your new policies will reduce confusion and help with adoption of the new rules.
Many companies will change the way they complete jobs. Pre-pandemic contractors finished jobs quickly by stacking teams, having multiple trades on a work site simultaneously.
Now many companies will use a staggered approach, reducing the number of people on site during any given day to ensure safe distancing practices. The specific changes you make to your projects depend on your services, but you must consider health and safety a priority for your team and clients.
2. Maintain business continuity
Not everything needs to change. You can establish a level of comfort with employees if you maintain business as close to usual as possible. Continuity is vital in the face of uncertainty, so look at your business model and make a fair assessment of services, noting what works and what doesn’t. You may find that not much has to change.
Taking health concerns, team sizes, and social distancing into account, you can still perform installations, renovations, and builds. For example, teams can maintain social distancing while wearing protective face masks and gloves at all times. Although small changes, your team may need additional training or quick reminders.
3. Establishing a new normal for employees
When standard practices change, training is in order. Employees need to learn a new way of interacting with each other and it will take time. While staying six feet apart seems like a simple rule, some workers may find it challenging. Provide all the necessary support and guidelines to help your team adapt quickly.
Start arranging training sessions now. Schedule virtual meetings with employees to discuss changes to protocols until you are able to meet in person. When you can meet in person, use that time to practice social distancing, learning how to perform team tasks six feet apart. Change seems impossible, but everything is manageable. Your business can thrive again.
4. Provide your team with performance metrics
Metrics are used to measure business performance and behavior. With well-managed data, you can create accurate forecasts for the company, allowing you to prioritize project needs. Data collection can provide insight into scalability, allowing you to optimize employee performance and materials necessary for the coming months.
If you have never considered measuring your company’s performance, now is the time. Having insight into the current state of your business allows you to maintain tighter control over spending. Many companies will need to work on recovering lost profits and your employees can help by reducing material waste, using time more efficiently, and delivering a quality finished project. Focus on data collection now to have better positioning later.
5. Employee re-hires and new hires
COVID-19 has resulted in historic unemployment numbers. Reopening your business does not mean an immediate end to the unemployment crisis. Businesses will need to start back up slowly with skeleton crews. More hiring will occur as customers return to normal buying patterns.
Base hiring patterns on new service contracts. However, instead of posting help wanted ads on job boards, consider reaching out to laid-off employees first. Helping your community refers not only to your city or state, it includes your company and the employees who served you well in the past. Lift your team up first and then focus on outside recruitment.
How GuildQuality can help
COVID-19 is a crisis unlike anything most have experienced in their lifetime. Businesses have struggled, but our communities continue to come together. There is an eagerness to return to normal, along with a fear of what the new normal will look like. Finding your way back to business-as-usual may seem impossible, but that does not mean failure is inevitable.
The next several months will see a rise in consumer activity and the start of economic recovery. While employees establish a new normal and prospects start looking for contractors again, GuildQuality can help you build your online presence and attract more business through our customer satisfaction survey platform.