These are challenging times for everyone, whether you own a business, work for someone, are self-isolating or because you are worrying about you, yours, or your community. The COVID-19 virus is undermining our society at a very basic level, and there are many of us who face a very real risk.
One of my rules for life is to surround myself with positive people. I find they help me with the various challenges, be they personal or with my business. My initial thought when the ban of meetings was announced was “Aaarrrgghh!” My business is all based on face-to-face meetings and it won’t come as any surprise when I say that I fundamentally believe in meeting people face-to-face.
However, I was amazed at the positive reaction I received from members when we made all our meetings virtual. This is a temporary measure, and we will return to the old format when all this malarkey is over, but for now we meet using Zoom (other systems are available) each sat in our homes and offices. Looking smart—at least from the waist up—and sharing support, knowledge and information. In fact, all the things that we gain at our usual meetings. But this way we stay safe and well and in touch with other businesses. Since we work under the Chatham House rule (what is said at a meeting can be told to others, but not who said it) and those people who are still choosing to visit can talk about their concerns. At the meetings I have attended in the past week people have also, I have noticed, shared personal concerns as well as business concerns.
I have also noticed that some, after the initial aaarrggghh moment, day or few days, have started to look at other options for doing what they already do, or at how they might do things completely differently, and some have already given up. Now, before anyone takes offence at that last sentence let me say that I know that some businesses will not survive. However, my belief is that if you try, desperately sometimes, to find the positive, however small that is, that helps. It also helps if the people around me are looking for the small positive too. It also means that when we each reach that aarrgghh moment again the positive people around are supportive and helpful and when it is their turn I can reciprocate.
I hope you and yours are safe and well. If I can help in any way let me know how and, if you want more information, or some more networking tips, have a look at my website: ebn.uk.com.