What a time we live in! COVID-19 has brought challenges to all business owners in their enterprises and their personal lives. At Celtar business consultants we have experience of working through a few recessions (early 1990s, 2001, 2008 and now 2020) so we share a longer term view with clients. We have never encountered anything like this pandemic, a once in a century event.
What is different now from previous recession events?
– recession is sharper, lockdown came quick. Though the lockdown is a deliberate execution of government policy to slowdown the transmission of such an infectious virus
– a pandemic brings public health considerations like social distancing which drastically affects the way we live, work and do business
– everything is digital, people are working from home, most small businesses have a web presence and are utilising several aspects of web technology.
In Ireland the government has been responsive and quickly put in place a range of supports for enterprises, and specific ones for small businesses (see the enterprise agency LEO Dublin City for example). The online trading voucher scheme has been revitalised, is on offer with a 90% grant up to €2,500. This scheme has encouraged many businesses to establish a higher quality online presence, with added ecommerce capabilities. Overall digital literacy is increasing.
Other government supports are assist businesses to retain staff. Laid-off staff are given emergency COVID-19 payments, keeping them available for a return to work at the end of a lockdown when premises are allowed to re-open.
Celtar business advisers
As in the previous recession, revenue in our consultancy business declines as our clients become less economically active. We continue to offer business advice and consultancy to all , so are kept busy and close to clients.
Small businesses have increasingly embraced digital transformation, see the StartUp Ballymun event Grow With Digital. Here 6 small businesses demonstrated how they have utilised digital technologies to grow and compete against larger firms.
We continue to work with clients who are exceptionally busy – they are in the right place, at the right time to exploit the moment.
And offer support for startups and small businesses on a range of programmes; mentoring, Business Continuity Voucher consultancy, the MentorsWork initiative from the Small Firms Association & Skillnet Ireland.
Busy doing what we like to do – building on the strengths of small companies, working with resilient business owners to survive and grow.
You are welcome to contact us for an online advice session via Zoom. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.