Starting a business during Covid is nothing like starting a business during 'regular times' (or so I've heard). If I'm being honest, I actually have never started a business during 'regular times'. It's in times of the most uncertainty I have seen the greatest opportunities. I started my first company back in 2007 during the recession, and ROK Financial in the middle of a global pandemic.

It's safe to say there have been tons of lessons learned along the way. Some I wish I could forget, and but truthfully all have shaped me into the business owner I am today.

I've compiled a few of the tips I have found beneficial for myself and my business -  take a read below and share your tips with me on my social media channels.

Keeping A Digital Experience

Now more than ever it's crucial to establish an online presence. Almost every person you know (even your grandparents and school-aged children) have direct access to everything at their fingertips. If your business does not have a website GET ONE, and FAST. Even if it is a simple landing page with basic information about what you do and how to get in contact with you, it's critical to determining your legitimacy.

Get reviews, it's free to do. Ask your most loyal customers to drop you a quick review on Google or quote them to be featured on your website. Over 90% of consumers rely on reviews prior to purchase so make sure you are asking Justin who comes in every morning for his cup of coffee, or Katie who's hair your color every month to leave you a review. Providing a positive experience is more important now than ever before. If people like your company, or even better, have fun with your company, they’re far more likely to become repeat customers and recommend your goods or services to others.

Keeping a Healthy & Focused Daily Routine

Having a daily routine is also essential to your success. Whether that be going for a quick run in the morning, meditating prior to your morning emails or meets doing something for you consistently helps with your mental ability to take on the day.

For me, I like to wake up get a quick work out in and enjoy a little peace before the chaos ensues. It's time I carve out for me (even if it's only a few minutes) it makes a difference in my day.

Focus on the positive. So many times as business owners we wrapped up in the day to day and feel overwhelmed by tasks and employee situations. In times like this, it's best to take a step back and list all the positives you have going on in your business and switch your mindset to that. Keeping a positive mindset helps you tackle those issues objectively and allows you to make the best decisions for your business. I

Tips To Be Productive & Not Reactive

Let's take a look at a few tips for being productive:

  • Organize your resources - identify what resources you have available to you and your business and what you may need to do in order to obtain the resources you may need
  • Have a plan. Don’t try to run your business by inspiration alone, regardless of your experience. Create a plan, then follow it, and only adjust it as necessary. Business plans are also useful for getting more loans (and on better terms), so they’re always a good idea
  • Outsource as needed. The internet has a functionally-unlimited number of workers who can perform just about any task imaginable, and for a better rate than full-time employees. Learning to make use of on-demand options is a key part of reducing costs and improving overall profits
  • Find a way to stay sane. Stress management is vital for success during these unique times, and pushing yourself too hard will ultimately harm your business instead of helping it. Learn how to disconnect, take time for yourself, and manage your overall well-being. Make sure to manage the well-being of your team, too

I'd love to hear some of your tips and lessons you have learned as a business owner. Share your thoughts with me on my social channels - Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Instagram. Use #LessonsLearned.

About the Author, James Webster

James Webster, founder and Executive Chairman of ROK Financial has almost two decades of experience within the financial services industry. His passion for helping small business owners and his innovative way of thinking, has allowed him to run multiple successful businesses including National Business Capital & Services. Under the National name, the team was able to help secure over $1 Billion in financing for small businesses nationwide.