From employment to entrepreneurship

One unexpected consequence of the pandemic has been what is increasingly being referred to as the ‘great resignation’. Whether driven by home-working, which means a greater array of jobs are available to candidates regardless of geography, or by businesses struggling or shutting down during the lockdowns, people leaving their jobs has become a major theme over recent months.

The great resignation began in the United States beginning of 2021, and by April, a record of 4 million people had quit their jobs. This trend was also witnessed in Europe, China, India, and Australia. The reasons for quitting the labour force included burnout, search for better work opportunities and higher pay, and self-employment. Apparently, the pandemic led many to realise that they would be happier being their own boss and took that opportunity to pursue their dreams.

This is why the great resignation has coincided with another trend toward the starting of new businesses. In July 2020, the number of business applications in the United States rose by 95% compared to the same period in 2019. In the UK, more than 400,000 businesses were registered in 2020.

Ensuring business longevity

The pandemic created a conducive environment for some businesses to thrive. For example, the need for social distance and the lockdowns prompted a rise in online retail and delivery and the ecommerce sector has boomed over the last few years. With customers accustomed to buying goods and services at the touch of a button, it seems like the pandemic will cause long-lasting shifts in the economy, so for new ecommerce businesses, everything is to play for.

Nothing is guaranteed however, and new businesses will need to apply imagination and hard work if they’re going to stand out from the crowd and become a brand of the future. So, what strategies can new businesses adopt to ensure a successful future?

1. Adopt an omnichannel strategy

A study conducted by Harvard Business Review showed that 20% of shoppers are store-only shoppers, 7% shop online-only, and 73% of use multiple channels when shopping.

Another study conducted by Forbes revealed that 88% of shoppers expect brands have physical and digital channels. Marketing and selling across multiple channels will help increase engagement and deliver better customer retention rates. As a result, your business will enjoy increased sales and an overall better bottom line.

2. Don’t compromise on quality

More businesses mean more options for consumers. If your business offers anything close to substandard, customers will stop buying from you and move on to your competitors. Although business owners are encouraged to reduce costs, you must make any changes that compromise the quality of your finished product. With imagination, business can maintain quality while also reigning in costs.  

3. Play the long game

Tackling immediate problems fast and without hesitation might seem like the right thing to do in some situations, but if you want your business to grow, take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Study the problem at length to see what is working and what needs changing. Doing this often will help you further understand your company’s business model and help you identify how its strengths and weaknesses come into play.

20% of small businesses fail within the first year. If you want your business to be among the ones that survive, undertake the research needed to ensure that there’s a market and demand for your product instead of replacing failed businesses and a plan to marketing and manage the journey toward hitting your business objectives.