Business Pulse Check Survey: Challenges, Wins & Best Practices From The Past Week


Earlier this week with our research partner OnTarget, we launched a new weekly Business Pulse Check survey to better understand how businesses across industries are wrestling with real-time conditions.  Specifically we asked (and will continue to ask each week) the following questions:

  • How would you rate your business’s response to COVID-19 thus far?
  • What have been some of your biggest challenges thus far?
  • What’s one of your biggest wins in the past 1-2 weeks?
  • Any best practices to share with other business leaders?

I was blown away by the quantity and quality of responses we had in a short period of time.  Thank you to those of you who participated.  If you’d like to participate in next week’s Pulse Check, you can complete the short four-question survey here.

Here’s a summary of what we heard from you this week:

COVID19 Response Rating

  • 26 percent of respondents gave themselves a 7 out of 7 grade
  • 56 percent gave themselves a 6 or 7
  • 92 percent were 5 or above
  • (These ratings are of course self-reported.  I wonder what their employees, customers and prospects would say?)

Biggest Current Challenges

  • Rethinking positioning of services and value propositions, i.e. sharpening product-market fit
  • Keeping everyone aligned & focused (also engaged with remote teams)
    • Maintaining productivity amidst the many distractions of the home office environment
  • Planning for contingencies amidst ever-changing variables and possible outcomes
  • Maintaining or adjusting sales expectations
  • Refining sales strategies
  • Defining your “essential service
  • Review and refine hiring – keep moving forward or preserve cash for now?

Biggest Win in Past Two Weeks (some examples)

  • Investing in brand (positioning and outward-facing messages) amidst the re-calibration
  • Improved employee communication & morale impact
  • Providing pro bono services or products (seen as a win internally and externally, especially done authentically and with integrity)
  • Transitioning to remote work without significant downtime or loss of productivity
  • Testing new ideas that otherwise wouldn’t likely be considered, possible leaps in innovation and impact as a result

Best Practices to Share

  • Quantify your value proposition to sell successfully when budgets and priority lists are tighter
  • Take the time for small talk and empathy at beginning of interactions (especially via phone and video calls)
  • Get outside, take walks, express gratitude
  • Over-communicate with your employees
  • Develop a consistent routine/schedule to stay productive while working from home
    • Proactively share examples & best practices of these with your remote-working teams
  • Focus on what you can control today, not what might happen in three months
  • Be ready to adapt and change more frequently as conditions and outlooks change
  • Get great headphones!
  • “The seasoned sailor never learned on calm waters”

We’ll review next week’s data and report on new contributions, wins and best practices again next week.  We’d love to hear your feedback and contributions here as well.