Case Study

Understanding Diverse Suppliers’ Needs in a Pandemic

As the world grappled with the unprecedented challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, one organization stood at the forefront of supporting small and diverse businesses through the storm. Devoted to promoting growth and development, they recognized the urgent need to understand the experiences, fears, and needs of their suppliers in the face of uncertainty. With a steadfast commitment to offering targeted assistance, they embarked on a journey to delve into the hearts and minds of small business leaders nationwide, seeking to provide the support and resources necessary to weather the storm and emerge stronger on the other side.

The Problem
An organization devoted to promoting the growth and development of small and diverse companies wanted to support their suppliers in the early weeks of the Covid-19 pandemic. Organization members in the health care and life sciences industries needed a rich understanding of small business leaders’ experiences, fears and needs so they could offer targeted and relevant assistance in an unprecedented global crisis.

Our Approach
We conducted a short but intense 3-day online community with leaders of small and diverse businesses nationwide. During this time we explored both their immediate and longer term needs – funding, support, networking resources, as well as opportunities to pivot their businesses. Small business leaders described challenges they were facing and drastic changes they had made to keep their businesses afloat, but also optimism and hope for the future, with many highlighting “silver linings” of the pandemic. The exercises and testimonials given by the online community were illuminating for our client and cathartic and empowering for the participants.  

The Solution
The research opened up new vistas for how the organization related to their suppliers. By exploring business owners’ hearts and minds in uncertain times, our client was able to position themselves to provide the support and resources that their suppliers needed.

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