Business Challenges During Covid-19: Andrew Miles
Tags – Andrew Miles
On the surface, for Milben Accounts, the working conditions haven’t changed due to Covid-19. But, this has only been possible through how we have set up our services.
When my business partner, Mark Bentick, and I joined forces 5 years ago, the aim was to construct our accounting practice as 100% digital backed, that can be operated from anywhere in the world.
However, soon after conceptualising and applying the idea of Milben Accounts, we ran into troubles of our own.
The Social Aspect of Business
After the 1st couple of years of operations, and continually looking at our 4 walls, we had realised that a complete digital model wasn’t going to work as well as we thought.
Fundamentally, humans are social creatures, and even introverted accountants miss the atmosphere and social aspects that come with working in an office, at least after a while!
So, over time, we have worked on this side of our business, and brought in social engagement, primarily through physical contact pre covid-19.
Now with Covid-19, we are facing similar challenges across the working world, as the structure of building relations has shifted once more.
Once the initial excitement of being able to work from home has worn off, we have slowly begun to feel isolated and lost.
Operational Changes Triggered by Covid-19
For our business, the obvious change, due to covid-19, has been that clients that we’d normally see face to face are now much more receptive to doing things online.
In fact, without travel time, we have been able to schedule more calls and online meetings, enabling us to provide extra support to our clients during this challenging time.
Thankfully, with today’s high speed internet and video conferencing technology, there are ways and means to connect and engage with people in a digital format, I can’t imagine what this situation would have been like with 56k dial-up internet!
But, this still leaves the question of continued relationship building beyond what is readily available in the form of existing clients and the good word that they have been spreading about us.
Online Networking and Volta Blue
Even beyond the realm of pure business, online networking meetings are a great way to connect with people and provide the much needed interaction in the current environment.
Whilst there are undoubtedly lots of groups out there, the format Taz & Harmeet have used for Volta Blue, incorporating the Mastermind principle into networking is the first, and only, one I’ve seen so far.
I have found that it facilitates very meaningful conversations with people, having a chance to share and discuss their business challenges. This provides a great conversation structure, where you learn a lot both about the people involved, and business in general.
My Gained Value
I have been a regular attendee of Volta Blue for the past month or so now. And, where possible, I have provided my intake on business finances and alike.
However, I have gained quite a bit myself too.
Being part of Volta Blue, I’ve learned alot about marketing on social media platforms such as linkedin – an area which I had been neglecting pre-covid.
In addition, it has been really helpful to connect with successful business leaders and learn what they have been doing to build connections and reach a wider audience.
By starting to implement this knowledge, we have begun to see greater interaction with our audience on social media, that will hopefully result in us being in a position to help more people with their accountancy & financial needs going forwards.
Hopefully events such as Volta Blue will continue to enable more people to work together to share knowledge collaboratively in the future.
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2020 Issue 1 of Volta Blue Magazine and was written by Andrew Miles from MilBen Accounts.