Get All Access for $5/mo

4 Ways to Find Opportunity in a Crisis Nurturing your company culture, strengthening community ties, delivering what your customers need and putting your best foot forward on your website are sound strategies for weathering the storm.

By Baruch Labunski Edited by Jessica Thomas

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

PM Images | Getty Images

Times are uncertain, and for business owners, the public health emergency has made the marketplace a tricky and terrifying environment. Following guidelines for social distancing might be inconvenient, and many companies face short-term losses and a bleak outlook. Taking care of your business during a crisis is vital, though. Let's take a look at some practical and responsible strategies that can help sustain your business, even in this difficult time.

Focus on company culture

Whether you're a sole proprietor or employ dozens of people, your company has a culture. It's your ethos, your raison d'être, what sets you apart from your competitors. While some companies dismiss touchy-feely topics like company culture, they do so at their own peril. In fact, IBM did a study and discovered that employees who felt a strong connection to their company and their peers produced better financial outcomes for their employers.

Related: 3 Ways to Build a Customer-Centric Company Culture

That's right: A cohesive company culture leads better experiences for both your employees and your customers. So while business is slow right now, take a little time to reflect on the kind of business you want to run. Dedicate some energy to encouraging your staff to think of themselves as part of a vital community, even if you're all working remotely. Culture can be cultivated, even from a distance. A shared sense of purpose and a commitment to collective goals can establish your company as a great place to work and an organization dedicated to delivering excellent customer service.

Get closer to your community

Whether you own an accounting firm, a fabric store or a landscaping business, you're part of your community. Even online businesses are based somewhere, right? If business is slow for your company, or if you're running a business that's been deemed non-essential, use your downtime as an opportunity to create stronger ties to your neighbors. Look around your community and see what needs your company can meet. Can it provide meals for a busy local hospital? Can you organize your staff to deliver groceries to community members who can't shop for themselves? Is there an educational program you can offer for free to parents looking to entertain stir-crazy kids? If you're forced to slow down in this difficult time, do something productive with your resources. Forging stronger bonds with your community will position you for a quicker recovery when things start to open up again.

Focus on what your customers need

When frightened consumers emptied shelves of hand sanitizer, what did distilleries large and small do? They shifted their production from artisan spirits to mass quantities of hand sanitizer. Although your business might not distill alcohol, you could still be able to rethink the goods and services you sell to meet new consumer needs. Restaurants, forced to close their dining rooms, have re-imagined their businesses, offering paper goods and fresh meat for sale to customers who might not be able to procure items at grocery stores. A fabric store could put together kits for DIY face masks. An accountant might study up on strategies and changes in tax laws to help clients keep as much of their money as possible. When the market changes, businesses have to change too.

Related: Whiskey Producers Are Making Hand Sanitizer. Here's How They Organized.

Up your content game

If there's a silver lining to this situation, it's the opportunity to tend to tasks you know you should do but never find time for. Creating dynamic content for your website is one of those tasks. Even if you're not a natural writer, there are tons of underemployed freelancers all over the world who can take your ideas and generate content that will engage your customers and help promote your brand and your business.

Related: Everything You Need to Know About Hiring a Freelancer

Whether you start a company blog, create entertaining and informative videos or simply update information about your company's offerings, giving your company website a makeover makes sense, especially at a time with so many people sitting at home on their computers. Not convinced that fresh content and a strong SEO game matters? Check out some SEO statistics, like the fact that 72 percent of online marketers believe content marketing is the most effective SEO strategy. While sales for your business are slow, seize the opportunity to take care of chores you might otherwise neglect.

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, 40 percent of businesses don't reopen after a disaster. That's a sobering statistic for sure, and although we can't anticipate or avoid every difficulty, what we can do is invest some time and energy into positioning our companies to emerge from this in the best possible position. Nurturing your company culture, strengthening community ties, delivering what your customers need and putting your best foot forward on your website are sound strategies for weathering the storm.

Baruch Labunski

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

CEO of Rank Secure

Baruch Labunski is an entrepreneur, internet marketing expert and author from Toronto. He currently serves as CEO of Rank Secure, an award-winning web design and internet marketing firm.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Business Solutions

Increase Productivity with This Microsoft 365 Subscription, Now $25 Off

It can make the entrepreneur life a lot easier.

Business News

Apple Pay Later Is Ending. Here's What's Taking Its Place.

The program was available for less than a year.


This Artist Answered a Businessman's 'Powerful' Question — Then His Work Became 'the Poster Child for Juneteenth': 'Your Network Really Becomes Your Net Worth'

Reginald Adams was the executive director of a Houston-based art museum for more than a decade before he decided to launch his own public art and design firm.


Harvard Business School Professor Says 65% of Startups Fail for One Reason. Here's How to Avoid It.

Team alignment isn't nice to have -- it's critical for running a successful business.

Business News

Here's What Companies Are Open and Closed on Juneteenth 2024

Since it became a holiday in 2021, Juneteenth has been recognized by some major corporations as a paid day off.

Growing a Business

I Hit $100 Million in Annual Revenue by Being More Transparent — Here Are the 3 Strategies That Helped Me Succeed

Three road-tested ways to be more transparent and build relationships that can transform your business — without leaving you feeling nightmarishly over-exposed.