How to handle the crisis as an entrepreneur? Should you wait or act? Should you change your field and focus completely? Go for full digitization?
These are probably familiar thoughts for many companies during the crisis time. For some business fields the kick was instant, for some it arrived with a delay, but it’s clear that all of us are affected.
The initial reaction for many is to be careful, which is human, but it should not change to become a standstill. If you stop it will affect everything and everyone around you. And — standstill is contagious.
This new, “contact-free” way of living will change many business fields and people’s habits. We are witnessing a situation where processes are changing overnight. Just take remote working, which, although on the rise, was not so obvious for everyone before. Even more established comforts, like ordering groceries to your home within a reasonable delivery time has become a new practical problem for many people.
The truth is that it’s not so simple for a lot of companies and people to change their working format or business model. We must face the new reality and not only adapt, but also re-evaluate.
Technological means and digitization do offer some relief in this new world. For many it will be possible to transfer a part of their services, communication or even logistics to the digital space. To go from the physical to the digital or create a totally new unit for your changed needs.
As a digital service and product designer, I see it as an opportunity (or even as an obligation) to use my knowledge and experience for the greater good. I need to help other entrepreneurs to exit the crisis successfully while also helping myself. Us designers have a rare chance to help others while operating within our traditional service, but we also must be even more effective.
Design solves problems! We work with concepts, we help shape and create services, we invent products and signs. We visualize, develop technologies and help to realize ideas.
Entrepreneurs need to feel free to think about growth opportunities and change. This is when design creates value. Thinking together has always helped humans and it should still be one of the first steps.
One of the most interesting changes we see in the crisis is how people’s habits and practices change. We need to react fast; analysis and prognosis is needed to notice new patterns firsthand. How will these changes influence businesses? What information can we use to better our services? What new service or opportunity can be created?
I’m sure that most creative offices, also we at DUX, are ready for the chance, will be flexible and see new ways of working, so that we could create something extra and help businesses to evolve. We are willing to work on the first mapping and consultations for free, help to find the “right path”, just think together. We can use our contacts and ask our partners to do the same, so we could end up with a solution that would help businesses to react to the crisis in the best possible way.
Some possible solutions:
The analysis and UX of an already existing digital platform.
A fast analysis that will point out your strengths and weaknesses and will help to decide in which way to move.
- Technical analysis
- General User Experience (UX), user flows
A solution for someone without previous experience in e-commerce while on a limited budget. Nowadays there are a lot of possibilities to create yourself a proper web platform (website, e-shop etc). You don’t need to have technical skills for that, just choose a design template, insert your content, tune, and go live.
Like: voog.com, wix.com, shopify etc
Moving your service from physical to digital or a new digital service.
Solution for those wishing to re-evaluate their product/service or to launch something completely new. Groundwork, analysis, design play important roles here, but this all can be done very effectively.
- Workshop nr 1: mapping, first-thoughts analysis, problem identification, goals
- Workshop nr 2: user flows, communication issues, service wireframes / schemes
- Execution phase: design and development, testing, domain and hosting
The result: digital platform/service crafted to your needs (website, e-shop, mobile app etc).
An example from one of our project that generated big change.
In 2018, our local Estonian sauna manufacturer Iglucraft had a big plan to start exporting. Their old website did not explain the meaning and traditions behind sauna for people unfamiliar with sauna culture. How do you sell a sauna to people in France or Germany? Client had a great product and photo material, our job was to bring everything together, to tell the “story of the sauna”. After the site was launched, many publications noticed, we picked up some awards and even David Beckham bought a sauna in his backyard! In 2019 Iglucraft expanded their production, doubled the staff, and sold more saunas.
Take a look at the case study on our website.
If you’d like to find out more details or want to discuss additional opportunities on how to adapt to the situation, contact me and let’s talk!
Kristian Lember from DUX design bureau; firstname.lastname@example.org