Business Owners – How To Communicate Effectively
Now is the time to communicate more than ever.
It’s at times like these when business owners and leaders must step up.Communicating some short clear messages to your staff, customers, suppliers and the communities you work within or serve.
Ensure your staff know that you care and what you are doing to protect them and make them safe.
This needs to be not only in words but in deeds – things as simple as soap, sanitiser, increased cleaning – lead by example.
Whilst you may believe your staff know you care – its important you show them.
Your staff will be concerned about their jobs as you are concerned about your business. Whilst none of us know how long this will last or the full extent of the Governments support, you need to tell your staff where you are with your plans and what it means for them.
Take Immediate Action – Provide Clarification
Whilst you have a list of staff actions you may have to put in place over the coming months from reducing hours, enforcing holidays or in deed redundancies – you need to be clear with your staff where you are NOW without talking about the future until it is reality.
Be clear what happens if they or their family have symptoms.
Ensure the message comes from you at the top. This is easier in small businesses but for larger businesses use technology to speak with your teams whether that is audio, or some form of video conference- you want to ensure your message does not get changed or diluted.
It’s about reassurance and communicating little and often
Connect With Your Customers
Let them know you care!
Ensure you or your sales team focus on them.
Draw up a communication plans who to contact and what to say. Keep it simple.
Do not sell – help, reassure, care.
Offer Added Value For Money
- If your business is in a strong place what extra can you do to help?
- Remember once we all come out of this and we will – these are your customer for the future or indeed LIFE.
- Reassure them you have taken the correct steps.
- Reassure then about your supply lines and ability to continue to support them. This will also help you plan and resource any challenges you may face.
- Is there anything you can get through your suppliers that you don’t normally sell that they need?
- You can possibly supply other services or good and still make money without profiteering.
- Contact any vulnerable customers and reassure them.
Reach Out To Your Suppliers
Speak to them – you are in this together!
Can they still supply you?
Can they offer other products your customers need (as above)?
What steps and contingencies do they have?
Can they help you or can you help them?
If supply lines are exhausted can you shop local?
As one of my customers said – it’s time to be Churchill!
Communication Summary – points to take away
There is no doubt we have some very challenging times ahead but if we all support each other we will come out of this much stronger. So, with the words of Winston Churchill and Maya Angelou ringing in my ears.
“We make a living by what we get, but make a life by what we give”
“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”
Once we come out of the end of this crisis, your staff, customers and suppliers will remember how you supported them – or not – as will you!
Support & Assistance from the UK Business Mentoring Team
We are happy to take calls from businesses of any size and in any industry to discuss their challenges and give them our advice, guidance and recommendations. There is absolutely no obligation to buy anything from us, this is purely an offer of a helping hand to business owners facing challenges in unprecedented times.
Telephone 0845 680 3634 or find a business mentor near you now.