However, despite all the odds against businesses, many budding entrepreneurs seized the pandemic as an opportunity to launch their own ventures, as they looked to respond to the rapidly changing needs of individuals and companies. In the UK during the last quarter of 2020, business incorporations were up 30% (compared with the same period the previous year) and the annual growth rate has been in double digits since June last year.
But when it comes to starting a new business, there are, of course, many challenges along the way and entrepreneurs know that having the million-dollar idea is just the beginning of their venture. If the last year has taught us anything, it’s that a successful business comes down to its founding team’s ability to respond to each situation and create an organisation that is smart and resilient.
Purpose of profit
Startups and any other kind of business in this current climate should strive to have a purpose and be socially responsible – organisations have an ethical obligation to contribute to the societies in which they exist. Balancing purpose with profit allows companies to see the bigger picture and developing an ability to future-gaze with a cause in mind allows for long-term improvements over short-term gains.
Now more than ever, organisations are in pursuit of an objective, with 79% of business leaders recently surveyed by PwC believing that a company’s purpose is central to business success. If an organisation is able to foster a culture that values purpose, research shows they will experience better financial performance, and it doesn’t stop there.
Social impact businesses are more ambitious, they attract the top talent, inspire richer innovation, make faster and more informed decisions, and are trusted. They can also have greater customer loyalty, which will ultimately attract more investment. All these attributes lead to a more successful and resilient business.
Health comes first
A key lesson businesses and individuals have taken away from the multiple lockdowns has been the importance of health and wellbeing. While most organisations have focused on supporting their employees’ wellbeing, founder health is just as important.