As communities throughout the world respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, we know this time presents unique challenges for businesses. Fret not, here are tips and recommendations to help you better navigate this phase, so you are on top of your communication with your team and customers:
Keep your customers updated. Since it’s anything but business as usual, keeping your customers in the loop about changes to the way you will be operating can keep miscommunication and frustration at bay. One simple way to do this is to update your Google My Business profile.
- If your hours of operation has changed, edit your profile to reflect these changes.
- You can also use Posts to communicate information such as special offers or inventory updates directly on your Business Profile.
- Since in-store visits and travel is being limited or cut back completely, turn on messaging so that your customers can get in touch with you in real-time from your Business Profile.
- If and where possible, consider setting an email auto-reply with answers to frequently asked questions.
Stay connected with your team. Remote working can take away a lot of the ease and convenience of face-to-face communication. Still, it does not have to be a nightmare. The key is to establish a structure around how and when team members reach out to each other. Also, making full use of collaborative tools can help the team stay organized. Simple tips that can help:
- Share your calendar with your team members, so they can find your schedule.
- Set up Google Hangouts Meets especially for matters that require deeper discussion, or ones that require real-time input from multiple people.
- Collaborate using a shared document, a quick conference call, or a chat room.
- Access important documents from anywhere by uploading them to the Cloud through a product like Google Drive or downloading to your mobile phone or computer for offline access.
Working from home. No doubt, it takes a little adjustment to make work from home work for you. At first, the flexibility may seem liberating – but productivity can quickly suffer if distractions get the best of you and the team.
Here, it is best to establish a designated workspace – this can be any area at all that can help condition your mind into seeing this as a space where you do work productively. You may create ‘work triggers’ that help you start the day – whether it’s exercising, reading the news, or getting your morning cuppa, find what it is that sets the tone for ‘work time’ for you. Keep yourself motivated with a to-do list, and schedule everything, just as you would at work – this way, you hold yourself accountable, and can feel accomplished with your mini successes throughout the day.
Here are additional resources for you to dig into:
- 4 tips for staying productive when working from home.
- Minicourses from the Google Primer app, accessible on your mobile phone.
- More tools and resources from Grow with Google, to help you work more effectively from home.
Cheering you and your business on over the next couple of weeks as we overcome COVID-19 together. For our journalist friends, do also keep an eye on Google Trends for the latest on what Malaysians are looking up during these times.
Stay home, and stay safe!