Entrepreneurship thoughts to subsist in new normal
To be honest, entrepreneurship is someone's career choice but it is assumed as the toughest among all.
An entrepreneur is the managing director, financial officer, marketing officer, supply chain management in charge, procurement officer, human resource officer, admin officer, and quality controller of his own business dealing with the constant changing market trends, consumption pattern, and customer behaviour.
He himself is involved in all type of risk taking, dealing with the 360 degree aspects of his business, foreseeing with the prevailing big guns who are in the competition.
The effect of Covid-19 is not only limited to the human health and well-being of social lives, even the economy and communal life cycles of evolution has been disrupted. World as well as national GDP growth has taken substantial backward strides. Unfortunately many big companies have laid off people, numerous smaller ones specially SMEs have closed shop/business/factory altogether. Undoubtedly COVID-19 has severely impacted many entrepreneurs in Bangladesh just as like as the whole world, however there are also few others who have shown enough resilience and even grown in this crisis period.
Now amid the prevailing new normal scenario how feasible is the entrepreneurial route? What should be the footsteps an entrepreneurial mind might think about? It is indeed a complicated position to proceed, predict and exist altogether. Still we have to accept the reality and think according to the new era of new normal.
Be pre-emptive with customer outreach. The old proverb "Customer is the God" is the basic of business, even if it is pandemic or post pandemic time.
Yes it is true that reaching customers in this new normal is very difficult. However as an entrepreneur we have to think outside the box to be connected with customers.
In many occasions, crisis situation creates opportunities and the online market place is the biggest example here. This pandemic and new normal has taken our digital experience and online shopping practice 10 years ahead.
In line with the customer communication knowing our customer and the solution they need in this new normal is very important.
We have to bear in mind that this hostile situation has also changed customer behaviour, consumption pattern and customer needs.
Adapt to a dynamic environment: Adaptation is the key to survive. We have to keep on asking and answering the right questions constantly. It will be a continuous 360 degree review of the business from end to end.
We may have to change and adapt newly with the pattern of procurement, stock lifting, distribution, operation, etc. as a whole.
This new normal situation also demands to practise empathy. This empathy will be for the employees, for the customers and for the society as a whole. Our adaptation process to this new normal will be based upon the accurate prediction and precise focus on the upcoming days.
Think digital: This is the most significant advancement needed for any enterprise in new normal. Most of us didn't know about Zoom meeting 2 years back but it has now been the ultimate solution provider for organising meeting keeping required social distancing. Educational institutes are habituated with google class room and Zoom platform at present.
The advancement of online marketplace and the sudden raise of ecommerce transaction shows how quickly customers are making themselves familiarised with this new era of pandemic reality.
As an entrepreneur we have to think and response accordingly. Correct digital advancement in business might eventually be the game changing strategy for any enterprise in new normal.
Well, there will be a lot of initiatives in an enterprise taken in this prolonged period of pandemic. Some will pay off and other will fail. We have to take things sportingly and learn from our failures and success both. Understanding the cause of success from other entrepreneurs are also very important to follow. Knowing the reason for failure and how to overcome that can also make initiatives easier to bring success. Correctly navigating this new normal will ultimately bring positive results in business.
Cash is the ultimate leverage component for any business. Taking proper care of cash in terms of revenue earning and cost minimisation both are eventually significant here.
For an example, marketing activities through digital platform reduces cost largely. Entrepreneurs should largely try to exploit digital marketing process here.
For delivery management system a number of channels have grown with minimum cost. For ultimate survival there are many ways of outsourcing resources as well.
There are things that will defiantly differ from business to business but as an entrepreneur one should try in all areas to maximise revenue line and reduce cost components in line with the customers' needs and dynamics of new normal. The unprecedented situation prevailing today demand cash influx by businesses to survive.
Pay attention to your health and well-being. Health is wealth. All our business actions and relevant activities will pay off if we are physically in good condition. Covid-19 is a great learning in every aspect for us. Cleanliness and maintaining proper health code is imperative. As an entrepreneur we should focus here for ourselves, our families, our neighbours, our employees, our suppliers, our dealers, our customers, our society. We will overcome in the long run definitely.
The writer is a senior banker.