NZARH has put together some useful information and resource links for you to help better understand your role in protecting your business and yourself, your clients and your team from the outbreak and the predicted economic downturn as a result.
We are increasingly being bombarded with the latest information and up to the minute details of new cases and deaths from the coronavirus (COVID-19).
There is much concern and people are altering their lives to protect themselves from COVID-19, Airlines are increasingly finding aeroplanes ½ empty with Air New Zealand already cancelling some flights, the CEO taking a direct salary cut and talk of staff being stood down, the Summer Olympics in Tokyo is looking threatened and many tourist operators are already finding it hard to make ends meet.
Without wanting to predict doom and gloom for hair salons and barbershops it is only natural that a downturn in business could follow.
A lot of the issues we are facing are driven by fear caused partly by continued media focus and hype with perhaps a gap in knowledge of what Coronavirus is and how we can manage a potential outbreak.
NZARH has compiled a list of things to do in preparedness to weather the adverse effects coronavirus could bring to your business. There already has been a confirmed case of coronavirus in Australia of a beauty therapist home after a trip to Iran. So it is prudent to know what you can do to minimise the risk in your salon. Clients may already be avoiding making and keeping appointments because of the increased fear of contracting the virus.
The First piece of advice is to know the facts, don’t listen to or read into the innuendo and fear inducing articles and newsfeeds from the media, their job is report the news and get ratings and have a tendency to hype things out of proportion. The best source of information is the New Zealand Governments official Coronavirus page containing up to date information and links to various information and support pages for you and your business.
Make sure you are aware of and following your money, be aware of your cash flow situation and budget. If a recession should happen as being mooted by most the BNZ economists it doesn’t have to be the end of the world, if you have a cash flow management plan in place. Simply put, that is where you manage your spending in relation to the income that you predict will be coming in. If your income is predicted to drop then be prepared to reduce your spending accordingly. Speak to your accountant or if you are an NZARH member you may qualify for a FREE Business Coach session to take you through some strategies and to help build your cash-flow plan. Be prepared and build some cash reserves in case they are needed in the future.
Prevention is much preferred than cure – be prepared for whatever might happen whilst we ride this current storm. Help your team by giving them clarity around the coronavirus, use the NZ Government website as a source of referral and assurance. Implement stringent sanitation procedures and make sure they are followed. Such as washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds frequently and before and after every client. Avoid touching their eyes, nose and mouth, cough into their armpit or a tissue and immediately wash hands. If your employees are sick, they should stay home and you should be prepared with a staff contingency in case of this. Again the NZ Government website has excellent latest information around this.
As important as making sure you and your team are taking precautions – your clients need to be aware that you are too.
When taking calls for an appointment reassure your client that you have implemented extra sanitation procedures to keep them and your team safe. Get that message across through all your online media and booking pages. Let clients know when they come in what the procedures are that you have implemented to keep them protected. And make sure you tell them that if they are feeling unwell no matter how important their hair appointment is that they must reschedule to when they are feeling better. Being proactive about this and sharing your precautions is a smart thing to do.
The coronavirus threat is real, it’s very important for you to follow safe sanitation procedures, know your backup plan and most importantly do not over react to all the hype. The more you understand using fact the less stressed you and your team and clients will be so be prepared and be proactive in your response to the threat.
We have faced many adversities in business over the years and with a good understanding and a good plan we should survive this one too which also will pass.
Please rely on the NZ Governments official website for guidance and recommendations. Some of these recommendations are to observe basic public health protocols including:
NZARH encourages all members and stakeholders to vigilantly monitor the official website and its recommendations.
If you have any questions regarding the coronavirus, please visit the NZ Government information website or call their information line