A Lincolnshire business consultant is calling on the community to pull together and avoid making knee-jerk service cuts, in a bid to give our economy best chance of surviving the coronavirus lockdown.

Taz Thornton, an award-winning business coach and best-selling author from Cowbit, near Spalding, has already seen clients suffering the results of panic decision making, and is urging the county’s entrepreneurial and self-employed community to stop, breathe and think before cutting off services.

“These are unprecedented times,” she says, “We all need to work together, stay practical, rational and away from panic if we’re to give our local business community the best chance of survival.”

The three times TEDx speaker, known in business circles as the ‘pink-haired powerhouse’, says we can minimise the hit for those self-employed and within small businesses with collaboration and innovation.

There’s no doubt that thousands of businesses are about the feel a financial “corona-punch”, says Taz, but we could lessen that blow if we stopped making rash decisions and found a way to ride the storm by “positively, wilfully, creating a manageable slope.”

She explains: “What we need, as a business community, is to keep it together. We might need to turn things down, innovate, adapt and ride the dip together.”

Taz, who was named Best Business Coach at the Best Business Women Awards in 2018 and one of the UK’s Most Inspiring Business Women in 2019, urges us all to spare a thought for those running their own businesses and offers this advice: “Instead of cutting off contracts or breaking agreements, try talking to your clients and suppliers.

“What are the possibilities? Are there services we can turn down slightly, rather than dumping? Deferred payments? Instalment plans? Goods and services exchanges? Can we barter? Can we create reduced fees to get us through?”

In an uncertain climate, full of fear, anxiety and stringent Government missives, it’s easy for people to panic and start turning off what they might see as ‘non-essential services’, but the impact, Taz warns, could be great.

“So many self-employed people are caught in the eye of the storm right now. Small businesses are the backbone of our society and yet, in times like these, they’re often the first to feel the pressure when people start to pull in their belts and cut non-essential spending,” says Taz.

“Our economy, our small businesses, micro businesses and self-employed owner-managers, are quite the opposite of ‘non-essential’. We need them. Our economy needs them. They need us. Using small businesses puts dinner directly onto their tables, shoes on their kids’ feet, and excellent skills, products and services into our hands.

“Now is the time to support and encourage, not cut off their oxygen. If we stop knee-jerking and talk to each other, this will be far easier to recover from.”

She adds: “If we go into COVID-19 panic mode and start switching things off carelessly, businesses will sink needlessly. We’ll be creating a sharply descending chasm, which will be far more difficult for us all to climb out of.”

Taz also encourages us to think about all levels of services and agreements, from the ground up: “It’s easy to start cutting small chunks but, even this week, as I began to browse my business apps and wonder which ones I might be able to manage without, I stopped myself.

“At the end of every one of those low-cost apps we shut off is a business trying to survive. If we all turn off, they crash.”

“The same is true for all kinds of business services – locally and across the globe. Stop. Breathe. Think. How can we best support one another to ride this storm?”


Editor’s Notes:

In a bid to support us through the Corona Virus crisis, Taz has already come up with a robust series of offerings to encourage and support self-employed owner manager, entrepreneurs and small businesses.

A free online coaching conference, providing guidance on staying focused and calm in the heat of the crisis, as well as offering advice on keeping brands visible and active during the lockdown, was oversubscribed in a matter of days, with 120 available places quickly snapped up.

Taz has also been using social channels to create regular, practical advice to help lift spirits and encourage community cohesion.

She has reopened her subsidised, budget coaching options for small businesses and those in need, as well as increasing available appointments, created a series of lower-level business consultancy packages with instalment options and offered a ‘make me an offer’ scheme to businesses who want to take advantage of her support on a tight budget.

Taz is a best-selling author, inspirational business speaker and multiple TEDx speaker, consultant on confidence, personal brand and visibility, and an award-winning coach (UK’s Best Female Coach 2018 — Best Business Woman Awards).

Taz has been featured on BBC, ITV, in HuffPost, Diva, The Daily Mail and countless other newspapers, magazines and podcasts. Taz is also a regular columnist for the America Out Loud talkshow network. In 2019, she was named as one of the most inspirational businesswomen in the UK.

Find her on FacebookLinkedInTwitter and Insta.


Email: Taz@TazThornton.com call 01406 380737 or 07920 461040.

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