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My Strategy For Surviving Coronavirus
By Samantha Bramley, who is founder of Active Potential Therapy Ltd, a sports and health clinic in Chippenham specialising in sports massage, sports therapy and osteopathy.
When did you realise the Coronavirus could be a problem for you and your business?
In early March, we started getting advice from our governing bodies on how to up our already stringent hygiene processes. We followed the government guidelines to the letter and continued working right up until March 20th and made the decision to shut just hours before the government announcement. The final week seemed to ramp up with an astonishing speed, on the Monday I was looking to see the opportunities and on Friday we had shut cancelling £1000s of business.
What has been your plan to continue?
We have set up online video appointments, offering them for free as not only a gesture of goodwill but also an appreciation of the limitations of the system. We have increased our social media presence and grown our email newsletter where possible.
How have you changed your business as the weeks have passed?
We have continued with the online appointments and released pre-recorded videos to help people help each other at home with some massage techniques and stretching.
Have you been able to access any Government support?
We have furloughed all our staff and I received the grant from Wiltshire Council just this morning, for which I am immensely grateful.
What have you seen about business which has been positive?
It is at times like these that you reveal your 'raving fans' we have had so much good feedback and support from people that it is heart-warming to know you offer an essential service to people.
Have you seen any negative behaviours in business?
I have the view that owning a business is a risk. I am quite happy as a director to not take any money at the moment and in no way see it as the government's responsibility to help me out. I am grateful for the help with wages etc but I had a pot of money set by for just such an event as I am aware how unpredictable business can be. We take the risks with the rewards. Whilst unprecedented as this is I have already had times in the last 5 years where work just vanished, there are no guarantees.
What advice would you give to others in business?
Do your best to lead with optimism and strength. Offer support to those who struggle with this time in isolation and be kind to everyone. If you can give free advice or help do so. After all this I truly believe people will buy even more with their hearts than they do now!
What can we do to help each other?
Be kind. This sort of problem will affect people in such a spectrum of ways. Emotionally, physically and mentally.
Your parting thought?
Anyone else miss hugs?!
More information from www.activepotentialtherapy.com