Press release: risk and resilience

ended 08. August 2021

On Monday we're going to issue a press release to your local and the national media about whether, as a small business or charity owner, the pandemic has changed your attitude to risk and made you better equipped to deal with uncertainty.

We'd love it if you could complete the quick three question survey >> here << and then answer the question below. Your response will be included in the press release. 

  • In what way do you think you have changed the most as a small business or charity owner since the beginning of the pandemic?

No need for an essay! One paragraph will do. Deadline is tomorrow (Sunday) @ 5pm if you'd like to take part.

If you're a Premium user, your response will be edited by an experienced news journalist to ensure it is as strong as possible and grammatically tight. 

19 responses from the Newspage community

Star Quote
"In a strange way, the pandemic has helped me longer term. I'm definitely more aware of what I do and how I want to do it. In March 2020, my business disappeared overnight as all my delivery was face-to-face until that point. I used the first lockdown to review what I really wanted to do and where I had previously spent my time and money trying to grow my business. I decided I wanted to still offer the services I'd done before, but I had to deliver them in a different way. I moved to purely online delivery and invested to do that. I've carried this on, with some face-to-face sessions starting to reappear, but online works well. I've significantly reduced the cost base of my business by stopping some memberships and reducing my travel. I also really think through which events I'll invest my time in attending now. The whole pandemic experience has given me a stronger foundation for what I do."
Star Quote
"Our business has changed immeasurably since the beginning of the pandemic. As a face-to-face training company, we lost everything in March 2020 and had to reinvent ourselves within the field of virtual delivery. I had to make the company leaner, invent new strategies and market our offerings differently. It was tough, but a year later we now have the capacity for more global delivery, we have a whole new range of clients and a very strong pipeline. "I have learnt a huge amount about resilience and adapted my leadership style to embrace new ways of working that I would probably not have entertained before. As challenging as it was, we are definitely stronger as a business and can see how we can grow in the future."
Star Quote
"Since the pandemic, I am more prepared for growth but also more capable of adapting much quicker if need be. I am no longer scared to take the risks needed to scale further. The pandemic has made me more resilient as a person and as a business."
Star Quote
"Nothing has ever made us focus more on the need to evolve and embrace change than the pandemic. We had no choice, since as a recruiter our income stream was stopped almost overnight in March last year. We had to adapt swiftly to support our customers with what they needed and act immediately. I have personally learnt that taking risks in certain situations can often be the best way to ensure success. In the business world, fortune very often favours the brave. As a result, we have now revolutionised our service options to support organisations more flexibly as they adapt to this new uncertain work environment. It’s an exciting time to support companies with the services they truly need, and at the price they want to pay, flexing up or down when needed. The age of a ‘one fits all’ contingency fee is over."
Star Quote
"Running a bootstrapped business is never easy. Having been hit by the pandemic and with no financial support from the Government, it made my business partner and I focus on saving as much as we could and plan our marketing efforts accordingly. We switched our business model to monthly subscriptions in order to better serve our clients and improve our revenue forecasts. The pandemic has definitely made us smarter in terms of the service we provide to our clients. The translation industry is quite a commoditised one, which is why big companies stopped at one point investing in it, specifically our travel clients. That made us focus a lot more on organisations that share the same sustainable values as we do and, since the pandemic started, we decided to plant one tree for every 500 words we translate. That's in line with our values and those of our clients, which makes for a much more authentic and longer lasting relationship."
"Navigating the pandemic has brought us together as a team. We now collectively feel more responsible for the results we achieve and are thinking much bigger as a result. As a business owner, I'm now looking at acquisitions and start-ups in order to take full advantage of the opportunities open to us."
Premium
Tina Judic
CEO at Found
"The start of the pandemic was a concerning time but we recognised early on that it provided an opportunity to seize the moment and that future plans could be rolled out sooner than intended. We’ve made a number of hugely positive steps to business growth that we perhaps wouldn’t have taken so quickly under normal circumstances."
"The pandemic made us realise that our business model wasn’t working and we changed everything in order to grow. We rebranded, changed our product and re-aligned with our target audience. Ultimately, the pandemic gave us time to think everything through and we are now ready to grow and scale in a more efficient way."
"Because of the restrictions imposed during the pandemic, I’ve become more agile and my services are now even more flexible. I've had to constantly adapt to new ways of working as new rules are thrown at us in order to keep the show on the road."
"For us it’s personal. In terms of both change and growth it’s been about increased resilience and adaptability and the building of more meaningful relationships with both employees and clients. Business has never been more personal than it is now. As a small business owner myself, it’s the shear number of emotional highs and lows that have been the most testing. Sometimes it’s felt like running in treacle whilst other times it’s been like being on a treadmill set to high, what we ve learnt is the meaning of true relationship and an appreciation of ourselves and our clients. Personally, I ve learnt that you can’t do this on your own the value of a strong team and having people around you has been what got me through this as a business owner. Im so much braver now and much more likely to take risks.
"Personally I'm still suffering the effects of Long-Covid 16 months in, with brain fog affecting the decisions I make as well as the way I run the business. Being faced with my own mortality has made me more determined than ever to get my business to where I want it to be when I retire."
"Those of us working in international travel are still faced with changing operating restrictions but we always ask our guests booking onto one of our Mongolia tours to be flexible and open to change and this is what the pandemic has forced us to be - flexible and open to change. We’ve learnt to deal with the emotional rollercoaster of the uncertainty of the pandemic and focused on community (raising £4000 for those impacted financially by Covid), on keeping our team together (providing free team training events and meet-ups) as well as our impact on the environment (creating a Climate Action Plan and creating our plastic-free Mongolia challenge). The pandemic has reminded us that we have a purpose outside of making a profit and this helped us to remain resilient so that when international travel does eventually restart, we can make an even bigger positive impact on our community and environment."
"As a small business owner and frequent global traveller, I learned to 'expect the unexpected' a long time ago. Resilience has been my secret to survival thus far. Adapting to new situations and even sometimes reinventing myself has been my strength and party trick. I'm grateful to have so many superpowers which have enabled me to continue living my best life even through these turbulent times."
"My business has become more resilient since the beginning of the pandemic. It has made me more determined to be visible and help as many women entrepreneurs as possible get seen by their ideal clients. I have created different platforms for us to get more people to hear our stories and this has changed my business from business coaching to being more focused on business growth through exposure."
"The pandemic has caused me to stretch my creativity muscles, pivot my business and explore opportunities I would never have thought to search for in the past. I launched my brand Karmela Cosmetics as a purpose-driven business (we donate 10% profits to organizations dedicated to women’s healing and empowerment), but when COVID hit, many people began experiencing increased uncertainty, fear and a sense of disempowerment. I began to think of ways I could incorporate additional giving back programs to lift women’s spirits, increase their confidence, and create more positivity during this uncertain time. With the assistance of partners, including Calmed Medical Supplies in Southfield, Michigan, since the start of the pandemic, we’ve donated over $20,000 worth of lipsticks to women in need. These women have either been diagnosed with a serious illness during COVID, or have lost their income and cannot afford to purchase small self-care items for themselves. Hence, since the beginning of the pandemic, I have changed the most in the way that I am constantly thinking about how we can give back and partner or network with other businesses to empower women. Never underestimate the power a small tube of lipstick has to help a woman face the world with more optimism, feel beautiful, and give her that boost of confidence to conquer whatever it is that she’s struggling with. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from this pandemic, it’s that at those times when we are most distant from one another, we have the ability to create real closeness and connection, through small acts of caring and giving. One tube at a time."
"As a business owner, the pandemic has shown me the truth in the saying "no one is coming to save you". Many small company directors have been left drifting in uncertain seas. So many new start-ups think that success will come if you work long and hard hours, wait for some help and bide your time but COVID has proven this simply isn't true. To make it through you have to be prepared to adapt to survive and to take these knocks without wasting too much of your precious time wallowing in the unfairness of it all."
"Not only did we launch our business at the end of 2019 when the first news about Covid-19 was emerging, we also sorely missed in-person exhibitions and trade shows. With our UK-made learning products being so niche, customers really needed to see them for themselves to understand their high quality and versatility and the immense value children can gain from them right from the early years through to their early teens. "With all the uncertainties that the pandemic brought with it and looking at how global supply chains came to a standstill, our ethos to remain fully made in the UK only got stronger. We continued to generate awareness for our brand on social media, reached out to parenting bloggers and influencers, established ourselves on a number of online platforms, consistently developed new products, and continued to showcase them on social channels to give viewers a near-in-person experience. All of this combined with the generous appreciation and word-of-mouth recommendations from our customers slowly helped us gain a loyal customer following, which is thankfully increasing everyday. "As things started to open up recently, we hosted our first pop-up at Oxford Street in London to experience physical retail and are looking forward to a variety of trade shows and exhibitions in the coming months."
"As a small business owner, the pandemic has been a time to rethink everything I've been doing and look at things through a completely new lens. Covid-19 has taught me to be prepared and be willing to adapt to changing circumstances. I won't be waiting for the next pandemic, but will use all I have learned over the past 18 months to see it through."
"Prior to the pandemic, SuperStar Communicator offered face-to-face coaching, training, speaking, but clearly this all disappeared in March 2020. We created new ways of reaching our clients via interactive virtual workshops. These covered topics that were much-needed at the time, specifically presenting virtually and running effective virtual meetings. We reached clients globally with attendees from over 60 countries, modified our content and increased our client base. SuperStar Communicator is developing an immersive learning platform with an Italian tech company to increase the experience for our clients and we have re-written our business plan with virtual delivery of our services now central to the offering. More generally, we have also adopted a growth mindset to ensure we survive the pandemic."