We’re getting into 2021’s later stages, but there are always new businesses popping up and startups launching, regardless of where we are on the calendar. Maybe you have what you believe to be a great business plan, and you can’t wait to get it off the ground. You might have the money in place already, or maybe you’re reaching out to banks or credit unions to see if they’ll agree to back you.
At the same time, things in the business world continue onward, Covid-19 is still very much a part of modern life. Some doctors and scientists feel that there will never be such a thing as eradicating the coronavirus. Because some people are so resistant to the vaccination idea and wearing masks, the virus is just going to continue circulating and mutating, meaning it will be with us for years into the future.
You’ll need to think about that if you plan on forging ahead and launching your startup soon. Let’s discuss how Covid-19 might impact those plans.
Covid-19 Long Haulers
There is a term that some doctors have started using now to talk about certain people who have contracted the coronavirus. That term is “long-haulers.” A long hauler is essentially someone who has contracted the virus, but instead of recovering from it or dying relatively quickly, they keep living with it, but it impacts them every day, and possibly already has for many months.
Some Covid-19 long haulers are receiving disability payments, and that’s great for them, since without that money, they would probably struggle a great deal trying to pay their rent, mortgages, bills, and so forth. The truth is that many of these individuals are still not doing so wonderfully, even with the disability payments, since that’s hardly enough for a lavish lifestyle.
How does this impact your startup plans? It might not affect them directly, except in the following way: a Covid-19 long hauler is someone who cannot be a part of the active job market. The virus has sidelined them, and they might be able to rejoin the workforce at some point, but that may not be for months or even years.
The fact is that this virus is particularly insidious because some people who contract it show very few signs, or they may remain entirely asymptomatic. It kills others very fast.
The long haulers are people in a third category. The virus does a number on their immune systems and harms them in all kinds of ways. They can’t work, which makes finding potential employees for your startup just a little more difficult.
The Minimum Wage Rejection Era
The federal government has also not raised the minimum wage in this country for many years, and it remains at $7.25 per hour before taxes. It’s ludicrous to think that anyone should work for that amount in the year 2021, regardless of the kind of work they do. Even someone who can only do so-called unskilled labor can’t possibly feel an hour of their time is worth that amount.
It’s anyone’s guess when or if the federal government will finally get around to raising the minimum wage, but over the past few months, we have seen many people effectively quit the workforce rather than continue to work for that amount.
It’s not just about the money, though. Again, Covid-19 plays a part. If you’re a fast-food worker, for instance, you might have reached a point during the past year when you felt that your life was not worth risking for that sort of job.
Those who walked away from these sorts of positions are obviously struggling financially, but some of them have moved in with their parents or other relatives as a way to survive. Nothing says that your startup is going to be a fast-food restaurant, but whatever it is, you should keep something in mind. You’ll need to pay your workers enough to convince them to brave the pandemic in person if they have to deal with the general public as part of the job.
What Does All This Teach Potential Entrepreneurs?
Entrepreneurship is very appealing to lots of people. The idea that you can start and run your own company rather than working for someone else has a great deal of allure, even if there are many inherent financial risks.
If you’re going this route, though, there are a few facts about living in Covid-19 World that you can’t ignore. The first one is that you’re going to need to pay your workers considerably more than minimum wage if you want to attract anything approaching the best and brightest.
The second thing to remember is that dealing with the general public is very unappealing right now. Many of them refuse to vaccinate themselves or wear masks. Your workers, regardless of their mask-wearing or vaccination status, are not likely to want a job where they need to deal with the daily abuse the public might heap on them.
Because of this, working from home becomes the most logical option. If your startup involves letting your employees work from home, you’re probably much more likely to succeed.
This means that eCommerce business models are going to thrive. If you can have a safe place to manufacture your products where your workers can avoid the public, that’s a good start. If you can then sell your products or services online, that’s even better.
Covid-19 continues to change the world, and that certainly includes the business arena as much as anything else. Capitalism means buying and selling, and that’s still going on, but some people are questioning the system’s fundamentals right now.
There’s no reason to think that America’s capitalist system will collapse, only that some businesses will do well in this new era, while others will struggle. If you do plan on getting a startup up and running soon, think very carefully about what’s likely to work and what probably won’t.
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