It is estimated that in The United States alone, 160,000 businesses shut down due to the impact of the pandemic. This comes to around 800 small businesses closing down every day, on average. Those who were lucky enough to keep their doors open did so with the assistance of a coveted PPP loan or similar assistance. There are some companies that survived without this assistance, but it wasn’t easy.
Mohammed Alsaadi has closely studied businesses that shut down versus the ones that pulled through, gaining valuable insight into the process. “The companies that closed down did not have a dynamic business model and no infrastructure that would readily allow people to work from home,” states Mohammed Alsaadi. Even if these organizations had the capability, they never developed a plan. “The companies that weathered the pandemic had some telecommuting setup in place, which was useful even during inclement weather. The difference is that these companies capitalized on flexibility,” he adds.
Being flexible is important when it comes to surviving the pandemic. Alsaadi observed that even companies considered as “essential” made the necessary provisions to let employees work from home whenever possible. For the workers who did not have this option, businesses that adhered to all medical guidelines and offered COVID-related resources to their employees fared the best. Not only did these organizations experience lower infection numbers, but the company morale was boosted. “This resulted in business continuing as usual, if not better, as employees were assured their workplace was looking out for them,” states Mohammed Alsaadi.
Essentially, the companies that pulled through the pandemic were the ones that put their employees first. Mohammed Alsaadi has always believed that people should come before profits and happy employees are productive employees. This simple concept turned out to be a hard-learned lesson for thousands of business owners, and the scores of people who lost their jobs are the ones who ultimately paid the price.
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