COVID-19 Blog 5: Ingenious Ways to Upkeep and Elevate Your Business During the Pandemic

Minority-owned small businesses are being particularly hard hit by the COVID-19

From time to time, I post guest-written blogs, and my 5th Covid-19 pandemic blog is provided by previous 3-time blog contributor Marissa Perez. Marissa Perez, co-founder and head marketing writer at Business Pop, has spent the last 10 years honing her marketing skills, and now is sharing her small business / entrepreneurial expertise through this third guest blog she is providing.

This blog is quite relevant to my consulting area of diversity in that (1) Covid-19 is disproportionately hitting minority communities health wise and (2) small businesses impacted by the accompanying economic crisis are disproportionately owned by minorities or have minority employees. This “double impact” is truly having the most adverse effect on minority-owned businesses.


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If you’ve recently started a new business, you’ve probably noticed that life looks and feels different since the March declaration of the coronavirus pandemic. But just because things have changed does not mean that you should give up on your dreams. Keep reading for a few ideas to help you build and grow your livelihood while the world adjusts to a new normal.

Adapt Your Business Plan

You have a plan, and your plan was to stick with it. Unfortunately, the global situation changes from day to day, and it’s almost impossible to predict how this will affect your business. You need a contingency. Think ahead to many different scenarios to predict how they might influence the way you operate. ZenBusiness has a list of resources to help you do just that and also provides info on how to run things virtually and manage income streams and expenses.

Give Yourself Extra Space

While you may already have a room in your home that works as an office, as you continue to grow, it might make more sense to add an extra building to your property. A separate building will not only house your home-based business, but it will also help you keep it separate from your personal life. If you’re on a tight budget, a prefabricated metal building is a smart choice and one that will allow you to expedite construction so that you will experience few, if any, interruptions. Ask your building supplier about different layout options and pay close attention to style and design so that you don’t clash with the appearance of your neighborhood.

Dip Into Dropshipping

Dropshipping has been called, “one of the easiest ways to make money online in 2020.” But it is much more than that. A dropshipping business model can help you grow a current business. There are many benefits, but pertinent to today is that dropshipping eliminates the middleman. In other words, it reduces the number of hands that physically touch your customers’ orders. This can help lessen the chances of contamination, which, fortunately, according to Hackensack Meridian Health, are already low. It is possible, as the virus can live on cardboard for 24 hours.

Hire Remotely

Remote work used to be a novelty. That’s not the case today, and work-at-home opportunities have been popping up out of both necessity and convenience in light of the coronavirus pandemic. As a business owner, taking your company to a virtual workspace means that you have an unlimited pool of talent. But, you have to make sure that your communication is on point. Unitonomy stresses the importance of effective collaboration (using tools like Slack) and notes that to be successful, the people in your business have to feel connected to one another. Give each team access to shared information that’s specific to each project. You can also keep your teams on the same page by providing regular updates via a newsletter or recurrent blog.

There is little doubt that the coronavirus will continue to have a negative effect on small businesses across America. If you want to get ahead and continue to enjoy success, you have to get creative. This might mean looking for new revenue streams or adding extra space where you can run your business effectively and without distraction. One positive aspect of the pandemic is that remote work has become more available, and you should have no problem finding people who are ready, willing, and more than able to help you grow.

COVID-19 Blog 3 – Diversity and Interpersonal Interactions during the pandemic

During these months of living through the Coronavirus pandemic, I will continue to writing blogs about my diversity, career development and leadership consulting through the lens of living through this pandemic.

Questions to ponder – how does what we truly think about diversity and inclusion manifest itself differently during this interesting time we are living through? Can some routine daily interactions show us how we may really feel about diversity?

I would like to share a story shared by a Black professional colleague of mine. In a recent trip to a home supply store, he needed some advice about a product he was buying for one of his home improvement projects. He was directed to a middle-aged white female employee who was the expert on that particular product line. As he approached her, when he was maybe 8-10 feet away, the woman stuck out her arm and hand in the “stop” movement reminding him to remember the social distancing rules. He asked his questions standing about 8 feet away.

Ten minutes later, my colleague saw the same store employee having another interaction with a white female customer with about two or three feet of distance between them.

So now some hard questions need to be asked:
• Was the store employee really worried about social distancing, or was it perhaps more of an uneasiness around men, black people, or black men that dictated her behavior?

In the US, the Coronavirus is disproportionately impact minority communities

• Did the store employee perhaps think that it was more likely that she could catch the virus from a black person than from a white person? I hope you all have been hearing about how the Coronavirus is disproportionately impacting minority communities.

• During this time of sheltering at home and social distancing, are we all going to have less and less interaction with diverse people?

• Finally, raising this up from a personal experience discussion to a broader discussion, what can we learn and what can we do about the statistics showing that minorities in the US are catching and dying from the virus at extremely higher rates than the white majority?

Now, on the positive side, I have now started watching the 6:00 World News Tonight on ABC and I really appreciate the wide range of gender, racial and cultural diversity of medical professionals shown and interviewed in the stories.

As our country and the world continues to unite to fight this insidious virus, let’s keep in the front of our minds the continue progress we need to make in the area of diversity, equity and inclusion. As we do more virtual interaction, lets also keep in mind:

1) That we can use this time to set up connections and interactions with diverse people from ourselves

2) To remember the economically challenged people who may not even have the technology or the living space to even connect to outside world.