Autumn Fair

6-9 SEPTEMBER 2020 | NEC BIRMINGHAM

12 May 2020

Inspired by Kindness: Giving our most important resource

As we look back over the last few week’s we have been overwhelmed with the generosity of our network and their support for our keyworkers and their own local communities. However, on top of these amazing donations, we have also been hearing of people who have been donating an even more precious commodity, their time and advice.  

With us all currently locked down, almost every business that we speak to is tackling the big question…What will this new normal look like for us? How do we make sure our business is resilient enough to cope so that should a second outbreak happen we are not caught in the same situation again.

There have been a number of people within the industry who have been proactive in offering their time, advice and the lessons they learned the hard way. For many of us that has been offering our time and skill sets to help businesses get up and running.

Helping the entire High Street

One of our favourite stories is that of Knutsford highstreet. Janna Caley, Owner of Boxed Red Marketing realised during the early stages of lock down that many of her own family had no idea of the local businesses around them. She quickly realised many of the stores on the local highstreet had a limited online presence.  She got in touch with the council and asked if she could create a virtual high street for Knutsford, at no charge.

Sandra Curties, town centre and marketing officer for Knutsford Town Council new that this was something that was greatly needed. They had been trying to work with local retailers, but needed a portal/ website that can show case local businesses, and show the local community what is on offer.

The portal was launched within a few weeks and has quickly provided local residents a way to find out who is open, who is offering delivery services, as well as daily updates on services. Whilst this was intended to be a short-term project it is now acting as a wonderful platform to hep some of those brilliant independent stores stay visible and engage with a community who may not have known what was around the corner.

Sometimes Kindness is using what we know and our skill set to help those in our community just because we can. The Knutsford High st. site is a fantastic example of what can happen when someone within that community offers up their time simply to help the businesses around them.

A helping hand on where to start

Whilst he would hate to be recognised, Stephen Illingworth, Product Development Director, at Widdop and Co has been tirelessly working with the retailers within our network to share insight around social media, ecommerce, health and safety considerations, and drawing on his own network to support his own online sessions where the only aim is to help people within our community who may not have known where to start. To do this whilst managing his own day to day, has been a significant commitment, and one many businesses are grateful for.

If you would like to access ant of Stephens up and coming sessions please click here
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