4 Ways Adversity Boosts Business
When I was little, “It builds character,” was my dad’s favorite observation, often in reference to loss, yard work, or my general dismay. As you probably know from personal experience, it turns out that sentiment applies to business as well.
Like most of you, I’ve run the gamut of emotions toward the seemingly grim state of affairs right now. At first I was unsettled by what was happening in other countries, then jarred by reality, indifferent, and even self-pitying. Now that it's clear this isn’t going to just disappear, I’m bound and determined to make this a good thing for our business and clients. That may sound like unlikely optimism coming from someone who's out of options, and you would be correct. Understandably, all video shoots have been postponed or cancelled, we’ve refunded many a deposit, and the promise Forged Film Company was beginning to show in its first year feels like a distant memory.
While theoretically true for our business, that is only one (detrimental) way of looking at it. On the other hand, powered by extra free time and a desire to be of service, we’ve partnered with other local businesses on one of our most exciting projects yet. During this time we’ve virtually and telephonically been introduced to contacts and amazing people we’d have never met under typical circumstances. We’ve learned some business lessons the hard way and remain fortunate enough to have income from my secure job as a registered nurse.
Bottom line, this situation is make or break in the world of business. Relying on the possibly false confidence that we could make a difference has been the most productive thing we’ve done all month. Here’s how y'all have inspired us to get creative.
Use Your Skills to Help
People need something from you right now. No, more like yesterday. Maybe what they need looks different than it has before and perhaps it will be an act of charity, but there is something your business can do to continue to grow. I’m sure New Balance never thought they would be making face masks and Ford didn’t know their factories would produce ventilators, but here we are. We’ve seen closed restaurants feed first responders and hotels house the homeless. For us, it’s been as simple as rallying with local businesses to document and encourage community support. What can you uniquely offer your folks right now?
Focus on the Weak Areas
If you’re a business owner, it’s likely you oversee all happenings each and every day. Even with supposedly uncomplicated businesses, that’s a lot of moving parts to keep tabs on. Now is your chance to devote some attention to workflows and other aspects of business that could be improved. Start by committing just one hour to update your website, check in with clients through some handwritten cards, revamp your contracts, and whatever else you know you’ve been neglecting. It doesn’t have to take all day to be so worth it.
Perfect Your Craft
Revitalize your enthusiasm for what it is you love about your job by learning something new or doing a “passion project” mostly for fun. Take a virtual course or experiment with a new product. Spencer has done this by sharpening his knowledge of everything cinematography and taking on a big project only because he cares so much about the subject. Then connect with your people, old and new, by sharing your dedication online. And most importantly..
Allow This to Inspire Your Best Ideas
It’s called ingenuity. Almost all great ideas are born problem solving during tough times, so no excuses now. Let these challenges inspire your best content, next level acts of kindness, and going above and beyond to meet the needs of your clientele. As a business owner, passion and flexibility are second nature to you. Now is when all that practice wearing many hats and thinking critically in a constantly changing market is going to really come in handy. You’re only here because you’re so darn resilient and determined. We have a choice everyday to repeat the past or evolve, and I hope this encourages you to trudge on with the latter. It builds character.
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