COVID-19, you’ve closed your business so what to do whilst at home?

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Haircutz

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In Ireland, salons around the country have generally voluntarily closed since earlier last week due to govt. advice. Schools and colleges and childcare facilities were required to close the previous Friday. Restaurants, cafes and pubs are all closed. The only businesses operating are small local food shops, supermarkets, pharmacies, petrol stations and those businesses that have swapped to producing essential supplies such as our local distillery who are now using the alcohol to make hand sanitiser for medical and care facilities.

It’s a strange new world for everyone all around the world but this situation won’t last forever, everything changes, and eventually we’ll be back to going out to work, meeting friends and doing what we’ve always done.

I’ve created this thread so you can post ideas and share thoughts about how to cope positively with this temporary new normal.

We will get through this!
 

Haircutz

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For any of you at home looking after young children, I’m going to post an extract from an email written by the Headteacher of my child’s local primary school which I found very positive.

- - - - - - - - -

For those of you that are finding homeschooling a challenge, you are not alone.

We are all scared and worried by what we are hearing and seeing happening around us. We miss our friends and are heart broken that we cannot visit and cuddle our grandparents.
Arguing about getting the school work for teacher done or keeping to a idealistic timetable suggested on the school's facebook page is the last thing anyone needs right now.

Some days, if you manage to get a little schoolwork done, that would be great. If it's ending in tears then instead you could cuddle up together and read, read read. Take turns reading to each other or read a favourite novel from your childhood to them.
Get out in the garden and kick some footballs. Get the children helping out around the house cooking, baking, matching the odd socks. Do a puzzle, play with play dough or get out the lego and build together. Look at old family photographs. Face time or telephone their grandparents.

Do anything you enjoy doing together.

When we are back in school we will be there to help them catch up on their school work so do not let that be one of your worries today.

In the midst of all this madness, we have been given an unexpected gift of time at home together and this could very well be the time our children remember as the best time in their life.
 

Haircutz

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Haircutz

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If you want to read more, your local library has access to lots of free books that you can download onto your tablet or phone and they also have free audiobooks too which I like to listen to with cordless headphones whilst I’m pottering about doing mundane jobs around the house.

Our local library is also allowing non members to join online during this period of isolation so even if you don’t normally use your local library, you should be able to join and make use of their online services. If you go onto the website of your library, there will be links to lots of free online resources.

I read the daily newspaper and magazines for free via the PressReader App that gives me free access online via my local library. I don’t need to pay a monthly fee.
 

House Beauty

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If you want to read more, your local library has access to lots of free books that you can download onto your tablet or phone and they also have free audiobooks too which I like to listen to with cordless headphones whilst I’m pottering about doing mundane jobs around the house.

Our local library is also allowing non members to join online during this period of isolation so even if you don’t normally use your local library, you should be able to join and make use of their online services. If you go onto the website of your library, there will be links to lots of free online resources.

I read the daily newspaper and magazines for free via the PressReader App that gives me free access online via my local library. I don’t need to pay a monthly fee.
That’s brilliant!
 

The beauty lady

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I've been in self isolation for 6 days today with my partner. My anxiety is through the roof. Cant get a straight thought, heartrates all over, nights are the worst. So I'm going to get my wool out and do some crocheting and see if that helps.
 

Haircutz

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Free audiobooks for children from Audible.
They’ve made them free to access during this pandemic.
 

House Beauty

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I've been in self isolation for 6 days today with my partner. My anxiety is through the roof. Cant get a straight thought, heartrates all over, nights are the worst. So I'm going to get my wool out and do some crocheting and see if that helps.
You’ve got to get out. Isolating is isolating yourself from people. You can go in your garden and sit with a book in a sunspot, or go for a walk. Just stay away from people. You could even get in the car and go for a drive to feel normal. My aunt visited today and she thought i’d gone loopy. Apparently the world is totally normal out there right now. Very relaxing.
 

The beauty lady

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I was talking to a friend of mine who doesn't normally worry about stuff and she was saying shes been that off and stressed about everything she weed the bed for the first time ever the other night. Just through pure stress. I've text all my clients to say I wont be working anymore for a while and that's relieved some of my worry but it's the uncertainty of it all. I've been down the allotment alot more these last 2 days and even just out for a drive in the sun
 

Haircutz

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Ok, it sounds like some of you need a helping hand to de-stress a bit and relax.

As we’re all in this together, my lovely DH has made a short relaxation recording that you can listen to when you want to chill for half an hour or before you go to sleep. He’s a qualified hypnotherapist, so it’s totally safe.

Just don’t play it out loud in the car!!


We will get through this! <hugs>
 

blossom

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Thanks Haircutz

I’ve closed today ... I’ll have a few days chilling with my doggie but have plans to use the free time that I never usually get as constructively as possible. I’m going to do a thorough sort of cupboards and sell (or chuck) anything I don’t love or use, start growing vegetables, paint a couple of rooms and plan some social media advertising and competitions for when we are back to normal. I sell a few products to clients normally and plan to expand this to online sales and increase my range, also my daughter is going to help me build a website.
[emoji16]
 

BeautyApp

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Hey guys some great posts on here. I'm finding one way of relieving the stress is to think about my business and how to grow and expand what I offer once lock down is over. Now is a great time to audit your business, look at your costs and what you can cut. This is especially relevant just now when times are looking so tough. Try doing a walk through of the client journey in your salon/service. What works well from a client perspective , what could you improve on or change? Do a full expenses audit , where can you make savings? Look at your re opening - how will you announce it? how will you handle/control the demand for appointments. If you were struggling prior to closure how can you make sure that some of that increased demand for beauty appointments comes your way after lock down. Marketing, lock down doesn't stop you marketing, in fact it now increases the time you have to think through your strategy and undertake marketing. Don't forget it's also a great time to deepen those client relationships - don't underestimate how appreciated a wee email or text from you will be to them especially those who are isolated alone. Remind them that they are in your thoughts, check they are well and ensure they have someone to take them food supplies.Clients will also want to know your ok as many customers are worried about small businesses right now and know that their custom is needed. Above all use this time positively to grow your business, it reminds us that we will get through this period and we will flourish- lets think forward.
 

New Spa

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I am using the time to redevelop my work environment and treatment room and get my treatment room moved to a downstairs location. falling down the stairs a few weeks ago and breaking my hip, made me question how safe I was actually operating with an upstairs treatment room. Luckily it was me that fell and not my client. But now I want to completely eliminate any chance of freak accidents, and a new look treatment room on reopening would be great. I should also be off my crutches by the time the virus restrictions have been lifted. It was also stop limiting me from accepting clients with mobility issues as they couldn't use my very steep terraced house stairs.

I wills need builders to block off a room and make a doorway, but I can get the clearing, painting and planning of where table, equipment, stock and display cabinets could be set up. But that can be done at a later date when all you his virus stuff is eventually over.
 

blossom

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Gave myself a lovely pedicure today [emoji2] never usually get the time and it’s just a quick splash of colour ... I’d forgotten how nice it is to feel pampered! (Altho not quite the same as when someone else does it lol)
Anyone doing any treatments on themselves?
 

Trinity

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Anyone doing any treatments on themselves?
I did my nails yesterday, first time in about 15 years they've been done at a leisurely pace, not hastily between clients, or before Husband comes home, or as I dash out the door on holiday. It was quite fun :D
 

TheDuchess

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I had a structure when I was at work, and things to focus on. I’ve taken a few days out to rest as I was a bit burnt out tbh.
Just before we closed I managed to shoot a little video of a hand massage to share on Facebook. I aimed it at children wanting to treat their Mum and I boosted it for a few quid. I’ve never shot a video or edited so sharp learning curve for me, but on the whole I’m pleased. It’s had 1500 play throughs so far.
If you’re interested you can see it on @DuchessBeauty.

I still have to calculate final pay for my staff, wrestle with the unknown details of the job retention scheme for my staff and try and get them as much money as possible without going into the red myself. I can’t claim anything personally as I haven’t paid myself from the business - just drawn out loan repayments for my initial capital investment.

Monday I changed my window display, put a load of plants (artificial and real) in the window. The windows are filthy unfortunately, so I’m going to have to wash them before I can post photos on social media, but I think it will help to show I’m not hiding under the duvet (or not all day at least!)

yesterday I started to make client care calls. I spoke to 8 clients from 3 weeks ago. All are symptom free and were glad to hear from me. It felt good tbh. Touching base human to human, I chatted to a student worried that next year’s placements have all been cancelled; a Sicilian builder, anxious about his exposure risks and his family; a sensible professional woman, really pleased to talk to someone, and an autistic mum anxious about managing with her support needs 6 yr old whose Special school closed sooner than everyone else’s. I made sure I stayed upbeat and positive, asked after them and shared some sensible advice.

Then I gave my Landlord 3 months statutory notice. I can’t see myself trading through this tbh and I’m not sure if I have the energy to start again. I have to hand the place back in good decorative order so I can get cracking on that - and if things don’t seem so bad in a month or tI can always rescind my notice, (it’s not as if anyone else is going to be signing a lease on the premises any time soon!). In the meantime I can post pics of my ahem “refresh” and keep in touch with my client base.

Today I’m going to learn a bit more about video editing, I’ve been following local yoga and Pilates schools who have taken their classes online and I’m trying to work out how to stay engaged with my client base. I’ve researched stands and things - I like my mini iPad so I want to stick with that, I dropped my phone and smashed the screen recently. I’m itching to get cracking vlogging, but I need my kit to arrive.

Tomorrow’s project is an online/Facebook shop. I’ve got stock to try and shift, (blasted candles), I wasn’t expecting such a comprehensive lock down, but I’m going to give online retailing a shot.

in between all that I’m going to study hard. Touch treatments are never going to go away, so although it will be hard to pay bills and stressful juggling cash flow for now I will get the income back over the year.

“in the midst of chaos there are always opportunities” Sun Tzu Art of War
 

blossom

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Wow you sound super busy!

Me too tho Duchess with the attempt at online retailing. I’ve even thought about an amazon shop. You sound more techy than me tho tbf [emoji23] let us know how it goes x
 

blossom

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Does anyone know if we’re allowed to send parcels if people buy things? Woman in post office had a right go at someone buying stamps the other day, asking if it was really a necessary trip out ... as the woman was stood there in her food retailers work outfit obv on way home [emoji849]
 

CFBS

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Well amazon are still dispatching packages. Seem to be using Royal Mail at the moment so our usual postman brings them.
 

TheDuchess

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Work related activities are ok as long as you’re not mixing with the public face to face.

Lots of non essential businesses have closed but this is more to do with the complexities of social distancing and having employees happy to work and not needing to socially isolate.

You can go to the post office but you should research alternatives as all businesses are going to struggle with manpower.
 

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