The history of businesses is long and storied. From the great ideas that changed the world to the small home-built businesses that gave one person a livelihood; the story of humanity is a melody of the entrepreneurial spirit intertwined with consumerism.
In the 21st century, it’s natural to want to keep pace with how businesses have changed and flourished. Whether you are a new starter wanting to hit the ground running or an old business adapting to changing times, modernity is the goal. Of course, this leads to the consideration… what is a modern business?
There’s no doubt that modern employees expect different things than the workforces of the past. The same is true of customers. The way things were done even 10 years ago would be out of place in the modern market, so how do you keep up?
A Modern Business… Is Flexible
‘Flexibility’ could quickly become the business buzzword of this decade. It applies to employees, who expect to be able to work different shifts rather than the standard 9-5pm. This is a generation raised on the idea of a work:life balance, rather than seeing work alone as their goal in life.
The principle also applies to customers. You have to be contactable, open to a dialogue, and willing to listen to complaints. Standard opening hours can be restrictive; half of your business can take place in the small hours of the morning thanks to online services.
Failing to satisfy the demands for flexibility is a one way ticket to business failure.
A Modern Business Is… Eco-Friendly
While there are a few outliers, in general, the populace expects businesses to be ecologically sound. Not being so can get you on a list of “bad” companies, which in turn will lose you custom that hasn’t even had the chance to sample your products.
This applies to everything, from how you dispose of materials to how you power your office. It’s imperative to investigate alternative forms of energy, championing them and broadcasting your consideration for environmental factors. If you’re not already doing this, then you should seek out local commercial solar installers and increase your level of recycling. Consumers are more ethical than they have ever been; if you’re seen to not be the same, then it can make your business look like it’s stuck in the past.
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A Modern Business Is… Interactive
No longer can you hide behind a veneer of corporate structure; a modern business is open, approachable, and willing to interact with its customers. Whether you are running a small lifestyle business from your home office or something huge like running a hotel, you are expected to communicate thoroughly.
This is not just through the website of your business, but it’s also now expected by consumers that you will engage on social media. You should be hosting giveaways, answering questions, and generally seeing your customers as a year-round commitment. Anything else and you will be left stuck in the past.