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Business as It Could Be

After months of lockdown and severely limited operations, business owners in California are now thinking about reopening to the public in a manner that is safe but that also helps them bounce back from the economic impacts of COVID-19.

Business As It Could Be is a proposal from a group of San Francisco-based small business advocates (including CAMEO and Small Business Majority) intended to help business owners navigate the reopening process while taking into account a post-COVID future that is healthier, more sustainable, and more resilient. This effort is guided by The World As It Could Be Human Rights Education Program.

The group developed the following set of questions that are aimed at guiding small businesses through every step of the process of emerging from the crisis while also keeping a long-term vision of relevancy and sustainability.

  1. What resources and funds do you need now to remain in business for another 6 months as you prepare for and initiate re-entry from the Shelter-in-Place requirements?
    – What are possible sources of these resources and funds?
  2. What do you think your clients and customers need from you in order to continue to patronize your business?
  3. What new policies and physical changes do you need to put into place to re-open safely and meet your customer’s current needs?
    – What resources do you need to make this happen?
  4. Are there things about your business you would want to change, even without the COVID19 crisis?
    – What opportunity does the current situation present to support the implementation of these changes?
  5. Are there new business model(s) or product innovations you can design and develop to change the way your business operates so you can implement the opportunities you identified above?
  6. Who else is involved in supporting the successful, day-to-day operation of your business (e.g., suppliers) who can be called upon to support you as you reopen your business and retool for a stronger future?
    – What changes are needed from these entities, or what alternatives are needed to provide your ongoing supply requirements?
  7. Are there opportunities to create more environmentally sustainable practices in your business and those of your suppliers as you consider your re-entry options?
  8. How can your business demonstrate inclusivity?
  9. What are possible new business opportunities for you that could arise from this situation?
  10. What do you need to know more about in order to implement your ideas, such as regulations that relate to your ideas?
  11. Do you know who to get help from? Who are your circles of support?