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My Strategy For Surviving Coronavirus
By Christine Roberts, Founder of the Fairford & Lechlade Business Club and freelance journalist. Supporting businesses across Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Wiltshire.
When did you realise the Coronavirus could be a problem for you and your business?
It became evident when the lockdown measurers were introduced and we all realised that businesses could not continue as they had been doing. We have all had to introduce new strategies to cope with the change in the economic climate and situation.
What has been your plan to continue?
I am trying to see the Coronavirus situation as an opportunity to re-group, re-organise whilst still offering help and support. I have taken up new opportunities and am considering other new opportunities for the future. Giving myself a feeling of hope and optimism.
How have you changed your business as the weeks have passed?
Regular monthly meetings have obviously ceased and our Business Awards planning has been put on hold. But I continue to put together a monthly newsletter to give useful information to our members and beyond. With regard to the journalism, this has increased with heart-warming stories coming to the fore on how people are coping. My services to publish articles is more in demand as people want to hear more and more about what other people are doing.
Have you been able to access any Government support?
Not yet. I am hoping to be contacted about the Self-Employment Grant at the end of May.
What have you seen about business which has been positive?
It is usually in times of adversity that new services, new products, new initiatives come to the fore. There are a lot of entrepreneurial people out there that have altered their businesses to overcome the coronavirus challenges and other people who have started up initiatives.
Have you seen any negative behaviours in business?
Generally, it is mostly positive. There are rumours that shops have increased their prices. I can’t confirm as I am self-isolating and do not go to the shops.
What advice would you give to others in business?
Try to think outside the box – lateral thinking – to either change the way you do business or change your business completely if you can.
What can we do to help each other?
Communication is the key! I know this all too well from my journalism! Keep in touch ‘virtually’ with friends, colleagues, family. Lend your support and don’t be afraid to ask for help yourself.
Your parting thought?
A bit clichéd, but I like this quote from Martin Luther King:
"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands in times of challenge and controversy."
Find out more about Fairford & Lechlade Business Club, www.flbc.org.uk.