The Outlook- June 2020

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You Are Reading Vol. 09 Issue. 6

Small Business

June, 2020

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Building Networks; Creating Wealth


SMEs for the New Business Environment SBA Prepares Small Business Owners for ‘New Normal’ The emergence of COVID-19 has forced small business owners across the globe to acknowledge and utilise E-Commerce in an effort to survive and maintain relevance. In light of this, the Small Business Association recently held a webinar entitled, “The New Normal- The Advent of E-Business”, to better equip the local small business sector for this transition. The session, sponsored by Flow Business, included tips on how to effectively work from home and the best technologies available to simplify remote work. Notably, the session took these discussions a step further by examining the cybersecurity risks involved with telecommuting and the necessary precautions that small business owners should take to avoid cyber-attacks. Assistant Manager in Risk Advisory at Deloitte and presenter at the session, Mr. Dwight Robinson expressed the true gravity of the situation, highlighting that prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, only 27% of global businesses worked remotely.

remote work, he articulated, would also cause an exponential rise in cybersecurity attacks, as most businesses were not adequately prepared for this shift. Mr. Robinson emphasised this point by noting that between March 11-26, 2020 alone, there had been recordings of over 400k incidents of spam emails by hackers, pertaining to COVID-19 in North America and Europe. Small business owners were therefore encouraged to take the issue seriously as they were not immune to these attacks as a result of their size. Despite businesses being given the ‘all clear’ to reopen and operate as normal while observing health and safety protocols, the way business is conducted has been significantly changed. The world of E-Business and remote work is rapidly becoming the new normal across the globe and small business owners are encouraged to integrate it into their operational systems where possible. blank s a c e Ways in which businesses can enable remote work and E-Business operations are by:

What’s Inside SBA Prepares Small Business Owners for ‘New Normal’ pg1 SBA Makes E-Commerce Easy for Members pg2 Welcome New Members


The CEO’s Last Word


Dr. Biz


relevant technology and equipment to facilitate remote work blank space b 3. for

Creating a vibrant online presence the company blank space

The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence itself, but to act with yesterday’s logic. -Peter Drucker

Screenshot of a slide presented by Mr. Dwight Robinson during the online session held via the Accession Meeting App sponsored by Flow Business

However, as of March 31, 2020, more than 60% of businesses worldwide were now operating from home. This significant increase in

1. Defining a “Work from Home Culture” blank space 2.

Investing in the purchase of the

Concluding, Mr. Robinson urged business owners not to be discouraged by the challenges arising from this new normal but instead encouraged them to respond effectively to change to ensure business continuity, recover by learning and emerging stronger and thrive by preparing for what lies ahead. blank

Session sponsored by

SBA Makes E-Commerce Easy for Members

Session sponsored by

requirements of a successful E-Commerce site, including: blank space blank space bl A clear logo blank space blank Deals, freebies and free shipping where possible blank space blank space blan Up-to-date social media pages and content blank space Branded products and blank space Diverse payment system options

conduct competitor research to ensure that their E-Commerce site and overall user experience was superior. This research could be conducted by: blank space blank space Checking competitor’s websites Checking competitor’s customer review/feedback and blank space blank spac Monitoring competitor’s social media platforms blank space blank space Notably, the webinar sparked increased interest in the NVQ and with a full class of twenty students, the SBA, which is celebrating five years as an NVQ centre, is set to launch the online pilot programme in early July 2020. blank space blank space

E-Commerce has emerged as a key pillar and saving grace for businesses across the globe during the fight against COVID-19. Unfortunately, many local small business owners were ‘caught with their pants down’ and had no modus operandi to facilitate the swift change in the business environment.

It’s not over!

Mask Up.

E-Commerce expert, Mr. David Byer presenting online via the Accession Meeting App sponsored by Flow Business

As a result, the SBA hosted a webinar entitled: “Online Shopping Made Easy” which served as an introduction to the association’s online E-Commerce level 2 National Vocational Qualification.

Mr. Byer also went on to advise attendees about how they could protect their E-Commerce transactions by inter alia: choosing a secure, reliable hosting platform for their website, backing up business transaction data regularly and never holding client card data. blank space blank space

The first unit of the course was presented by the E-Commerce NVQ tutor, Mr. David Byer and focused on helping small business practitioners plan and prepare for the implementation of E-Commerce. This was accomplished by highlighting the


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Lastly, Mr. Byer instructed attendees to

Accession Meeting User Name

User Name

User Name

User Name

User Name

SBA Welcomes New Members Zoom

SBA Member

SBA Member

The Small Business Association welcomed over eighty new firms to its membership since the arrival of COVID-19 to the island in March 2020. blank space blank spacem blank During the online orientation sessions held in June, many of the small business owners openly lamented about the devastating impacts of the pandemic on their businesses with several confirming that they were still experiencing little to no business activity. However, CEO of the SBA, Senator Dr. Holder assured the new members that the association was dedicated to navigating and assisting the small business sector through this difficult time. blank space blank space Dr. Holder acquainted those in attendance with the mission, vision and various roles of

SBA Member

Gallery View

SBA Member

the association, emphasising the SBA’s commitment to lobbying and advocating on the behalf of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). blank space blank The provision of pertinent training and development courses and information webinars was also highlighted as a key role of the association in order to give members the necessary tools to learn and thrive in the new business environment. The senator expressed her view that not enough small business practitioners were taking advantage of the Small Business Wage Fund which the SBA had lobbied for and encouraged all members to apply for the financial assistance once they qualified. Lastly, members were exposed to the SBA’s

SBA Member

newest marketing campaign, entitled ‘SOS! Support Our Small Businesses’ which was aimed at bringing value to the membership. The campaign which will end on July 31st 2020, focuses on highlighting all members of the SBA in an online directory found on the association’s website and encouraging consumers to patronise local small businesses in an effort to help save livelihoods. blank New members are encouraged to become active participants in the activities hosted by the association as the SBA looks to reengineer and strengthen MSMEs in the upcoming financial year commencing from July 2020. blank space blank space blank sp

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The CEO’s Last Word

“Business as Unusual”

by Sen. Dr. Lynette Holder (SBA CEO)

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, discussions surrounding the implications of technology for the future of work were without end. However, this future has arrived sooner than anticipated with companies across the globe being forced to rapidly shift to remote work, E-Commerce transactions, delivery services and marketing via social media platforms. blank space blank space Now that lockdown restrictions for businesses have been relaxed, the business community must look to restart its engines and face this new normal head on, while remaining mindful that the progression of COVID-19 across the globe remains uncertain and the chances of a second wave of the pandemic on the island is probable. blank space As a result, the reopening of firms will require business owners to do more than simply swing their doors open. They must now redevelop their business models and create agile operational strategies that can manoeuvre comfortably around any future probabilities that may arise. blank space b It is also imperative for companies to listen to the changing wants and needs of consumers

and respond quickly with effective solutions if they wish to remain relevant and profitable. blank space blank space One glaring example which comes to mind is the heightened demand for delivery services across the island. This demand, which was once only a ‘want’ has now evolved due to the health and safety concerns surrounding COVID-19. Now customers have become more insistent on only utilising firms which offer E-Commerce platforms and delivery services to avoid unnecessary interactions with the public. blankspace blank space blan

leaving many scrambling to catch up with the times. blank space blank space

Picture taken from SBA’s June Webinar presentation entitled “Surviving the Post COVID-19 environment”

Picture taken from SBA’s June Webinar presentation entitled “Surviving the Post COVID-19 environment”

As a result, businesses that already offered and perfected this service were miles ahead of those who refused to implement such measures in their operational systems before,

Small business practitioners must acknowledge the beginning of a new era for commerce. The rules of marketing have changed dramatically, with the fourth ‘P’ in the marketing mix, ‘Place’, now being redefined from simply brick and mortar to E-Business and delivery services. blank blank space Now is the time for the small business sector to reengineer its thinking and mechanisms to emerge stronger and more ready for whatever lies ahead. Perhaps it is also time for marketers to update their foundational model for business. blank space blank space

How To Survive and Thrive Post COVID-19 Checklist

Dr. Biz

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It’s not over yet!

Wash your hands.

Get in Touch

The Small Business Association of Barbados, Suite 101, Building 4, Harbour Industrial Estate, Bridgetown, Barbados Tel: (246) 228-0162 | Fax: (246) 228-0163 | Email: | Website: