Baby Steps in Business - If not now, when?

December 1, 2020

Running a Start-Up During a Global Pandemic

If there was one thing we didn’t foresee back in January when we were assessing our business plans for year, it was a global pandemic. Everything we thought we could rely on was flipped on its head, whether it was business related or not. Life as we once knew it has changed indefinitely.

No business idea is 100% failproof from day one. There will always be a reason not to do something, or not to take a risk.

There is no denying the catastrophic effect the pandemic has had on the economy as a whole. Yet if you look closely there are some businesses who are not only surviving but thriving. In fact, “12% of [start-ups] have seen their revenue increase by 10 percent or more since the beginning of the crisis, and one out of every 10 [start-ups] are in industries actually experiencing growth”.[1] What makes these start-ups different to the rest then? Well, necessity is the mother of invention.

NEED rather than desire has been the foundation of the most successful inventions and businesses. Wanting to start a business isn’t enough. As surveyed by Micro Biz Mag, 65% of UK employees wanted to start their own business.[2] There must be a necessity for your business if it is to survive against the odds, especially during the current economic environment.

According to Startup Genome “over half of Fortune 500 companies were created during a recession or bear market, and over 50 tech unicorns, collectively valued at $145.2 billion, were founded during the 2007-2009 recession years”.[3] During a time that most would be hesitant to start a business, there was a need for something better born out of the very conditions that would send most individuals running for the hills.

Life as we once knew it has changed indefinitely.

Some of the inventions we take for granted in our everyday lives were born out of a necessity. Take the device I am currently using to write this blog, and the one you are also using to read this blog. The modern-day computer as we know it, whether in the form of a laptop, tablet or smartphone, started its life during WW2. The biro pen you use every day was invented because fountain ink was inconvenient. Fountain ink smudged easily because of lengthy drying time. More so, the RAF put in one of the first large orders for biro pens because fountain pens leaked at high altitudes.

So, how does that translate to today? One example is the recent shortages of PPE (personal protective equipment); people resorted to making their own face masks, and now 100’s of small businesses are now selling them online. That’s hundreds of entrepreneurs seeing a necessity and filling it.

Necessity is the Mother of Invention.

I'm not saying that everyone who dreams of running their own business should take the plunge and start today, far from it. No business idea is 100% failproof from day one. There will always be a reason not to do something, or not to take a risk. But, if you have a business idea that will provide the world with something they truly need, something that is necessary, then why not now?

Written by Phoebe Blair


References

[1] https://startupgenome.com/blog/covid19-insights-global-startup-survey

[2] https://www.microbizmag.co.uk/startup-statistics/

[3] https://startupgenome.com/blog/impact-of-covid19-on-global-startup-ecosystems

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