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4 Inspiring Examples of Business Innovation in the COVID-19 Era

By Brian Farris   |    July 21, 2020   |    11:59 AM

(And Lessons Your Small Business Can Learn From Them)

Businesses across the world are struggling to survive as the coronavirus pandemic continues. However, it’s not impossible to find examples of innovative businesses that have learned how to thrive during this public health crisis.

Today, we’re going to take a look at four examples of industries that have quickly transformed how they provide goods and services. Each example has takeaways that you can use in your own company, too.

1. Telemedicine

The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically accelerated innovations in healthcare, particularly telemedicine. Patients and providers have been forced into live-video visits, which are surprisingly effective.

According to neurologist Michael Okun, national medical director for the Parkinson’s Foundation, there’s one big positive to come from this crisis: “We accomplished in 10 days what we have been trying to do for 10 years — fighting and advocating and trying to get telemedicine up and going.”

Takeaway: Sometimes, it takes a cataclysmic event to force change and modernization. In your business, leaning into these inevitable changes can be an effective way to stay profitable. 

2. Virtual classes and workshops

Communication tools, like Zoom, are important pieces of software that keep your business running smoothly. They’re integral parts of the communication and collaboration process. During the coronavirus pandemic, plenty of companies have used video conferencing tools to host virtual classes and workshops for their customers, too.

One of the most common examples can be seen at gyms and fitness studios. From online yoga classes to virtual boot camps, these companies have pivoted their offerings to appeal to a stuck-at-home audience.

Takeaway: Think about how your company can offer its services virtually. If video isn’t the right medium, could you write an ebook, product guide or create an interactive website?

3. Virtual business solutions

The way modern companies do business is changing, which means that Intelligent Office franchisees across North America are staying busy. One example of these changes can be seen in the rise of the popup office

With a pop-up office, small and medium-sized teams can rent on-demand office space for as long as they need. There are no long-term leases, which makes this an attractive option for companies who aren’t sure if they need their big corporate offices any longer. 

As Intelligent Office’s President, Brian Farris, explains, “Businesses of all sizes have realized that paying fixed rent is no longer necessary and the sublease market proves it. Smart business owners also realize that culture suffers without human connection and have opted for Pop-Up Offices where the entire team can rent space on-demand to connect and socialize.”

Virtual office spaces are also a great solution for businesses that want their employees to get back to work safely

Takeaway: When it comes to the spaces your team uses to get work done, you have plenty of choices. Whether you need a meeting room rental for a single day, a private office on a monthly basis or something else entirely, virtual office providers like Intelligent Office have the options you need. If you’re interested in finding a flexible and affordable office space, click here to learn more.

4. Rapid decision making that leads to innovation

Our final example can apply to countless companies, because all modern businesses are capable of thriving in the COVID0-19 era.

As consulting firm McKinsey writes in their recent article, Ready, set, go: Reinventing the organization for speed in the post-COVID-19 era, companies must “increase the speed of decision making, while improving productivity, using technology and data in new ways, and accelerating the scope and scale of innovation.”

Fortunately, there are many examples of this approach working across industries that include retail, manufacturing and more. Just read the McKinsey article linked above for more inspiration — you may be surprised by what can apply to your own business.

Takeaway: Business survival in 2020 and beyond won’t be easy. But, if you want your company to thrive, you need to be ready to try new things and make decisions faster than ever before.