Every January, people set New Year resolutions, aiming to stick to them throughout the coming months. Whether they are successful or not, largely depends on the scale of their pledges and how achievable they are.
This year, the new beginning that’s normally ushered in by the coming of January was delayed; lifestyles were placed on hold and the world remained closed for most businesses. Now, as the latest series of lockdowns looks set to end and vaccinations accelerate, is a better time put those some New Normal resolutions in place and look forward to new beginnings.
Below are five New Normal resolutions we think every hospitality, entertainment and retail business should make as they next open their doors. These are not only achievable, but essential for success in 2021.
I will pay even more attention to the needs of my customers
With consumer attitudes and priorities changed by the events of the last year, it will be more important than ever to pay attention to ‘what customers want’. In the past, their needs might have been a ‘unique experience’ or ‘personlised marketing’. Those things will still be important, but now they will also be looking to for evidence that brands care about their safety and that they are supportive of local communities, among other things.
By communicating their approach to meeting said needs, either individually or via grouped audience segmentation, businesses will build stronger and more loyal customer relationships.
I will invest in the right technology, and make sure it compliments my existing tech stack
There are a lot of technologies, services and equipment vendors proclaiming loudly their theirs is the product every business needs to invest in post-COVID. Who’s to say they’re wrong? And if you have the capital to invest, go ahead! But only do so once you’ve given full consideration to its uses. Will the product boost your revenue/output in the long-term? What ongoing benefits does it bring?
Most important, is it future proof?
The volume of technology that businesses rely on is growing; it’s essential that incoming solutions can work alongside existing ones, and that they have the flexibility to adapt as further technologies are added in the future.
I will optimise the customer journey
Unless your offering is based on long, leisurely lunches and dinners, speed has always been of the essence in food service. From now on it will be about speed combined with appropriate safety measures.
Before you reopen, put yourself in the customer’s shoes and walk yourself through their journey. You might find nothing, or only identify small things, such as the use of clearer signage to point out cleaning stations.
Consider what else you can do to streamline their experiences with you; a digital ordering solution that lets customers order ahead and skip queues all together, for example, or digital menu screens to make contactless selections easier.
I will review my operations to optimise back of house operations
While reviewing the customer journey and front-end operations, look also at the back end of the business.
How can productivity at the back of house be optimised? Could kitchen automation save time (and money), and might a digital communication system improve the efficiency of the team overall? With extra pressures placed on businesses, every minute that can be ‘saved’ might results in extra revenue for the business.
I will collect, analyse and apply customer data
There are numerous opportunities for brands to collect customer and sales data and to apply it to their business decisions. Whether it’s through an ordering platform or social media, if you have ownership and the rights to make use of the information you collect – why wouldn’t you?
We would encourage every business, no matter how large or small, to farm that data, analyse it and put it to good use. It could provide the key to a successful year.
What are your New Normal resolutions? Speak to Theravada to see if we can help you achieve yours.