Last month we took a deep-dive into the new opportunities opening up for entrepreneurs, as more of us receive the Covid-19 vaccine and we inch closer to an economic recovery. Those are still very much in play.
However, as the situation around us continues to evolve, even more opportunities are becoming available. Here are three more savvy moves that entrepreneurs need to be cognizant of.
1. Raise growth capital in your business
A year ago, when the pandemic first hit, there was a lot of uncertainty surrounding investments.
Now, however, the situation is reversed. There is a lot of interest and money available, with stock markets near record highs and numerous multibillion dollar IPOs in the news. There are also many government programs in the U.S. and Canada pushing economic growth, which is driving investment.
The timing has never been better to raise growth capital.
In the first quarter of 2021 alone, global venture investments reached $125 billion, a 50 per cent increase quarter over quarter and a 94 per cent increase year over year. If you have a tech company, even better, as investors are looking for emerging technologies.
There are some lingering concerns with unemployment levels and access to capital, but these should dissipate once more regions lift their lockdowns and people are more readily vaccinated.
2. Ramp up your sales and business development
In the same vein, now is the perfect time to ramp up your sales and business development efforts. The Wish Group has been very opportunistic in this regard, hiring more individuals to the sales team and looking to invest in emerging technologies.
There are two key reasons why:
- The presence of government-backed business aid programs.
- Pent-up demand to do commerce.
As previously mentioned, governments in Canada and the U.S. have been very proactive about encouraging economic growth, even if some of it has gone a little under the radar.
In Canada specifically, there is a wage subsidy for employers. Originally this was supposed to end in June, but the Canadian government has now extended the program to September. It has also committed to continuing other income support measures, which bodes well for regular Joes and entrepreneurs alike.
The other reason to ramp up sales is the pent-up demand for commerce and in-store shopping. Outside of vehicles and restaurants, experts are also anticipating a surge in demand for travel, as people return to their normal routines.
3. Reimagine the office environment
The Covid-19 pandemic shifted the dynamics of where and how we work. Many people began working from home and have since adapted to its unique rigours, so it’s safe t o say that this trend is here to stay.
Yet, the rumours of commercial real estate’s death are largely premature. There’s still plenty of room for office environments in the post-Covid world and with the right adjustments, these too can flourish. The key word here is “environment.”
When it’s deemed OK for all of us to return to the office, we’ll likely see a hybrid model – a mixture of remote and in-office work. People will want to have the option to come in. Perhaps they will spend less time in the office overall, but when there, they will be producing a different quality and type of work.
While there are many advantages to working remotely, there are still certain functions that are better suited for an in-person, office environment. For example, no matter how advanced our technology becomes, it cannot easily replicate the feel of physical contact, overhearing things and connecting with people over a real discussion. You will want to make the office environment more hospitable and leverage this need to connect.
So, what does this mean? Ideally, the office should look less like a workspace, with rows and rows of cubicles, and more like a place of community. You will need to make your office a more exciting place in which to spend time.
With fewer people in the office at any given time, you can open the space up, add more lounge furniture, and features such as a ping pong table. You should also put a renewed focus on the kitchen area as a shared space and environment for collaboration. Team members can enjoy meals together and connect with one another, but also open laptops up and discuss projects. Kitchens can be a strong centre of community life outside the office. The same can be true inside the office.
Need more? If you’re an entrepreneur with questions and concerns about navigating this economic recovery (or any other topic for that matter), I want to hear from you. Get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.