Consumers are spending. The economy needs this traction, and the lifecycle of growth will continue to take place, even in a pandemic.
Businesses in Trinidad & Tobago are innovative and resilient. Most businesses that adopted a ‘wait and see’ or risked keeping staff and operations going through those first few months of uncertainty, are cashing in. There is no big windfall or great lottery for everyone, rather, it’s the ability to see what is ‘present and available’ magnified. The business model for one of the hardest hit industries has changed, to combat the challenging disruption of Covid 19. It’s impressive the way virtual services have been churning out, bludgeoning their way into our homes, offices, lives; giving choices we never had for things that we have always had. The food service industry and its employees, workers and customers have to think differently, and repurpose to survive. All stakeholders need and benefit from the ‘social value’ of this highly competitive market. It will not be business as ‘it used to be’. It cannot return to its old self but rather a new improved version of ‘liming’, pubbing, getting together zone is waiting to be unveiled.
Innovation is “a pandemic silver lining” according to McKinsey in their October 2020 feature column. They further add, “companies digitized many activities 20 to 25 times faster during Covid-19” (McKinsey,2020). Let that sink in and imagine something of catalytic proportions causing destruction and loss of lives globally creating breakthroughs that would have taken years to evolve into being.
In Trinidad & Tobago, you don’t have to go out to the 5-star hotel for a meal, they are packaging for you to have their food in your house served by you on your dinnerware! Now that is an easy fix, once the promotion, pricing and product can meet your needs with your budget! In reviewing a few offers, can conclude this is a major win, as no leftovers are thrown away, over indulgence is limited as the need to ‘eat your money’s worth’ is no longer an issue ( deny it if you must, but it is the truth for many), and as you linger over a meal, the quality of the moment without the hassle is an added value properly appreciated. The benefits of this are endless and now at discovery stage for many consumers.
When thinking about money and value, through intrinsic benefits, its easy to feel the impact of adjusted working hours, remote working, and less time in traffic away from home. Extrinsically the heat is on with less work hours, rotations, and changes in the status quo of having ‘a job, any job’. Business and job re-design is a reality of intrinsic necessity for business survival. Being able to adapt when there is no money and bills pouring in is a challenge of many as platitudes of ‘look on the bright side’ are only good when the basic necessities are present. It is a paradox, a contradictory feature of value verses value. The value to the bank, government, business owner, employee and customers are different but align at the point of survival.
The silver lining which comes through innovation has to be propelled by the entrepreneurs of our society. The reality is, while innovation is being revealed, a greater crisis is looming. What will it take for the homeless, jobless, and in many instances hopeless visionaries to pivot in their own lives? Social entrepreneurship has to be the way we innovate right now, so that ‘silver lining’ is felt by the people who need it most. Are businesspeople willing to take risks in this period of uncertainty, are we able to embrace a different calling – profit for the people, by the people? There are quite a few companies that stand out, but there numbers are insufficient based on the size of this crisis.
Consumers are spending, and I sincerely hope all of society will benefit and not a select few. This will be the truest meaning of a ‘silver lining’ during this pandemic.
Keep safe and keep moving!
References: How Covid-19 has pushed companies over the technology tipping point – and transformed business forever. McKinsey (2020)
About Me: People and family are big motivators for me. Caring and love are tangible words that require action and fulfilment of God given capacity. Experiences in Sales, HVAC, Business Development, Entrepreneurship and everything else are intertwined, existing together in my life. As a problem-solver navigating through chaos and crisis is my new normal. We can make sense of everything!
Give Hope to all you meet and watch the world grow!
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