Should You Open A Business During This Pandemic?
The Last Global Financial Crisis Saw Many High-Profile Companies Start. Will COVID-19 Do the Same Now?
At the height of this current pandemic in March, American entrepreneur Shanel Fields wasn’t too worried about shutting down her business as she was getting ready to start her new one!
From her perspective, the timing couldn’t have been better as her company, MD Ally, allows emergency medical dispatchers and other first responders to route non-emergency calls and patients to virtual doctors, to help local governments improve their emergency response systems.
“Something that a lot of people don’t know is that more than half of calls that go to the 911 emergency line are nonemergency,” said Fields. “Those non emergency calls overcrowd hospital emergency rooms and delay ambulances for everyone else.”
But she also recognises how crazy it must sound to start a business during an economic collapse. She knows that while she’s hiring, many small businesses are worrying about whether they’ll ever reopen. Yet here’s the thing, though. New businesses are forming in spite of the pandemic, though, unsurprising, at a slower rate than before.
Past downturns produced some high-profile global companies: Airbnb, Disney, General Motors, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Slack, Uber and Venmo, to name a few. Will it be the same this time? Well, some positive signs are already there…
Earlier in mid-March alone in the U.S., Bloomberg reported that there were more than 500,000 applications to set up new businesses there. Although that is down nearly 20 percent from a year before, no one needs a reminder that these are very unique times indeed!
So, what’s driving some entrepreneurs to be so brave in such uncertain times then? Don’t tell me everyone’s just relying on gut feeling? No way lah…
Just like how the above companies were created coming out of the last recession, there will be many similarly innovative companies spawned from this coronavirus episode. Many talented people with careers on hold now might be re-examining what they really want out of life.
If you’re one of these people, perhaps you should identify what’s holding you back from starting a business of your own right now. Let’s examine the reasons/excuses listed below.
“𝙄 𝙛𝙚𝙖𝙧 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩 𝙞𝙛 𝙄 𝙨𝙩𝙖𝙧𝙩 𝙣𝙤𝙬, 𝙢𝙮 𝙗𝙪𝙨𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙨𝙨 𝙬𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙛𝙖𝙞𝙡.”
Starting any business is risky, so is thinking you work for a company that will take care of you and offer you employment for 30 years. Nothing in employment is guaranteed, you have to perform and get better at whatever you do or you will be replaced. Well, if that’s the case, that sounds riskier than starting a company where the control is in your hands. Life is an adventure, working for someone else for 30 years is not.
“𝙄 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙣𝙤 𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙤𝙪𝙧𝙘𝙚𝙨 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙩𝙖𝙧𝙩 𝙖 𝙗𝙪𝙨𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙨𝙨.”
Well, things like crowdfunding exist today where you can raise money through pre-sales of the product or even get investors. And other cloud-based services like Shopify for e-commerce will allow you to get up and running for very little money. So yes, there has never been a better time to start a company!
“𝙄 𝙙𝙤𝙣’𝙩 𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬 𝙖𝙣𝙮𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙖𝙗𝙤𝙪𝙩 𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙧𝙚𝙥𝙧𝙚𝙣𝙚𝙪𝙧𝙨𝙝𝙞𝙥.”
You can change that by joining other networks of entrepreneurs or adding more entrepreneurs to your network. The more you meet and learn from these people, the more normal it will seem to start your own company…
“𝙎𝙩𝙖𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙖 𝙗𝙪𝙨𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙨𝙨 𝙞𝙨 𝙝𝙖𝙧𝙙 𝙬𝙤𝙧𝙠.”
People already working hard to earn a liveable income think that starting a business requires double that effort, which they don’t want. Well, this is simply not true! It’s not about how many hours you work but the quality of those hours. And if you are going to work hard anyway in your career, might as well work for yourself lah, right? Plus, when you work running your own company and it’s something you love, it won’t feel like work lah, friend!
“𝙄’𝙢 𝙣𝙤𝙩 𝙘𝙤𝙣𝙛𝙞𝙙𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝙤𝙛 𝙨𝙚𝙡𝙡𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙖𝙣𝙮𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜”
All this while, at a minimum you have already been selling your talents, and perhaps even selling the products or services of the company that employs you. So, when you truly care about your company and your products or services, it will feel less like selling and more like helping people!
“𝙄 𝙬𝙤𝙣’𝙩 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙨𝙚𝙘𝙪𝙧𝙞𝙩𝙮 𝙤𝙛 𝙖 𝙨𝙩𝙚𝙖𝙙𝙮 𝙥𝙖𝙮𝙘𝙝𝙚𝙘𝙠.”
There are people who cannot live with the downs and ups of running a business, and instead prefer the stability and security of a job and a regular paycheck. But unless you work for the government, there is no guarantee of jobs for life. Do you wonder why so many companies are starting in a recession? It’s because people who get laid off start them….