They say that ‘when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change’.
All of us have been propelled into a period of change that no one could have predicted, and few were prepared for. And while change is scary, it’s also a breeding ground for new ideas. Just like global crises can lead to outpourings of conspiracy theories, that energy can also be used to transform the way we live with new ideas to meet the needs of a changing marketplace. It will be those who embrace this change that will thrive in our new world.
Some businesses are already seeing the current situation as an opportunity to reach new far flung audiences through diversifying into online services and training. Though the idea of online training itself is not new, some businesses are now taking the opportunity to explore its full potential to their benefit. The routine and safety of face to face classes, workshops and seminars made it easy to put off exploring online options but now ‘must do has become a great master’ and some businesses who were stuck delivering their classes to people in the same geographic area have now created the possibility of gaining customers all over the world.
The notion of robotics has been dancing around in the background for a few years now, but I imagine that the dent to business for manufacturing and production firms caused by Coronavirus is a risk many of them will be making strides to avoid in future. There’s no doubt we will see the development of robotics ramped up a little. And while there will be arguments as to the ethics of replacing labour with robots, the change will undoubtedly create a wealth of opportunities leading to whole new careers in the design, building, sales and servicing of robotics to the manufacturing and production industries.
It’s often been mentioned in recent times that cash could soon become a thing of the past. The recent crisis and the new opinion of cash as ‘dirty’ could be the catalyst to make that happen. Everyone likes to have a little cash in their pocket but when shops won’t accept it, there’s no choice really but to use cashless payment methods and this will mean that many retailers who were reluctant to move to cashless payments in the past will now have to move that way. Therein lies the opportunity for new ways to pay.
Those are just some ideas as to how the business community will create new opportunities but how does the crisis create ideas and opportunity for Joe Bloggs? Well, consider when you usually have your best ideas - when you’re on your own, when you’re outside, out of necessity for something or by observation, and the Coronavirus crisis has created an abundance of opportunities for people to be in these situations.
People are still trying to keep to a routine and with no other way to leave their home, most people are taking advantage of their exercise allowance to go out for a walk or a run. This is the time when the creative juices flow and ideas are likely to come. If you are vigorously trying to come up with a business idea or opportunity right now just stop – you can not force an idea. Instead, take advantage of your exercise time to relax and clear your mind alone. This is when your mind will be most susceptible to new ideas.
The days of the 9-5 are all but gone. People are now realising that it is possible to work from home, manage kids and do the daily household jobs. Sure, the routine might have changed, but it is possible and I think that now you will see a lot of people who had previously dismissed their ideas because they were too stuck in their old routines will reignite those ideas finding creative ways to work their new businesses around family life.
‘Necessity is the mother of all invention’ and the current situation has created a multitude of new necessities. While before-hand parents had to entertain their kids in the evenings and weekends, they are now having to entertain them morning, noon and night while also trying to continue some semblance of schooling. Sites like Twinkl have temporarily offered free access to some resources but that won’t last forever. The obvious ideas here center around services in tutoring, home school packs, and entertainment though I’m sure there are those who will develop very creative services and products to service this new need.
I think the next 12 months will usher in an age of entrepreneurship unlike anything we’ve seen before and the reason for that will be change.
If you have found a novel business idea or a new way of running your business, we’d love to hear it. You can send us your story by email firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call 028 87 723 489 for advice if you have a new idea.