The Coronavirus boat is still rocking for you and your customers. The future is uncertain. It’s hard to plan. We’re all taking it one day at a time.
As a building materials company, this creates an opportunity for you to come out of this in a stronger position.
Many of your customers are lost and confused. They are looking for leadership from companies and individuals who can help them navigate through these times.
You can be that leader, even if you don’t know exactly how all of this will play out.
How Do You Lead When There Is So Much Unknown?
1. Be Calm
In one of my midlife crises, I bought a Porsche and went to race driving school. My first instructor scared the shit out of me as we tore around the track. It was all about doing everything as fast as you could.
It was a thrilling experience, but I didn’t really learn anything.
My second instructor was a thoracic surgeon. His focus was on calming yourself and the car. It was almost like we were going around the track in slow motion. It wasn’t just slamming on the accelerator – I could feel the apex of the turn and know where the braking point was.
I learned something important from that driving lesson: the crazier a situation gets, the calmer you should get.
Two things happen when I stay calm during chaos. First, I can see the situation as it really is and find the best path forward. Also, being calm has a way of calming other people and they’ll look to you for guidance.
Staying calm while others panic helps you get better results. Even though it felt like my second instructor was moving in slow motion, he actually turned faster lap times than my “let’s go fast” first instructor.
2. Listen and Learn
It’s hard to know the answers today, as the situation is changing daily. Your customers are adapting quickly. You are in a great position to learn how they are dealing with these challenges and share their solutions with others.
By listening to your customers, you will also find ways to better help them. Remember, these are not sales calls – these are listen and learn calls.
3. Be Optimistic
Your customers are already exposed to plenty of doom and gloom. The last thing they need from you is even more of it.
We will come out of this. Yes, things will change, but we will be okay. At the end of the day, no matter what happens, people will still need a roof over their heads.
Your customers are highly aware of the challenges they face. Keep their morale up by emphasizing solutions and opportunities.
4. Look for Ways to Help
Many companies have shut down their spending when they should be redirecting it.
A number of companies are offering more online courses and training. Other companies are teaching their customers new skills like how to sell homeowners without in-home selling.
How can you help your customers find a more creative path to success?
5. Have a Point of View
How do you think the market will change? Share those opinions with your customers along with your recommendations for how they can adapt.
For example, I think healthy buildings will be very important. What does that mean for your customers?
As companies figure out that working from home can save them money, what opportunities will that present? New homes designed with home offices? A boom in remodeling homes to add a home office? Rethinking multifamily where workspaces are the new amenity?
In Uncertain Times, Be a Leader
In times of crisis, customers look for guidance and leadership. If you can be the one to offer it, you will come out of this stronger.