2020 has truly been a year to remember and a year to forget.
I enjoy sharing how business owners successfully come up with solutions to new and old problems. Doing so, because they decided that they would challenge themselves and persevere when faced with adversity.
This is a success story of WDB Marketing in South Holland, Illinois.
Recently, I was able to have a phone call with Keeana Barber, CEO of this incredible Black owned small business. She was candid and transparent about how she adjusted to these unprecedented times. Sure, she and her team could have cut back on business hours, due to them predicting there would be low demand for their services. Instead, they did what any wise, professional small business would do: They found new relevant problems to solve.
During the George Floyd protests and rioting, they provided a solution to one problem that was specifically impacting black businesses across the nation. Countless businesses, large and small, across the globe were already facing great difficulty acquiring funding during the Covid-19 pandemic. It appeared that black owned small businesses were definitely hit the hardest!
Standford Institute for Economic Research explained in a recent study, why pandemic closures may be permanent for select businesses. Many businesses were unable to pay ongoing expenses to survive the shutdown. This study revealed that "African-American businesses were hit the hardest by COVID-19. The first estimates from April 2020 for black business owners in the United States indicate[d] a massive drop of 41 percent."
The lootings that took place during the George Floyd protests in neighborhoods that were already suffering, were not ideal. Add Covid-19 to the equation and some businesses were virtually doomed, to say the least.
WDB Marketing launched www.SignsForCovid.com. Signs For Covid has everything businesses needs for re-opening and operating in a safe manner. This company has also printed well over 2500 Black Owned signs for free. From curbside and window signage, to branded Covid-19 masks and safety assets. Their team's timing was impeccable, as Chicago and other cities prepared to enter Phase 3 for reopening businesses.
I've heard and read about many success stories that give me motivation and great joy. People and businesses are thriving. Figuring out ways to come out of this catastrophe on top. Some people are starting businesses, while others are closing. Their reasoning, motivational and financial factors may vary, but one thing's for sure: Those who are building during this "global storm" have a mindset that doesn't allow defeat! Keeana Barber is a perfect example of what's possible when the going gets tough.
WDB Marketing has proudly supported thousands of small businesses. Since 2006, they have serviced over 5,000 businesses in the areas of marketing, graphic design and full-service printing. Every year they host an annual event, the WDB LEGACY AWARDS to connect their network of entrepreneurs and award the next generation of entrepreneur to support their dreams. This company has also recently secured their first contract with the United States Postal Service.
I have to admit that even I could've claimed defeat at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. However, I made a decision in my mind that I would not allow myself to complain and give in to something that was new and unfamiliar.
To the WDB marketing team: Thank you for pivoting in a way that allows you to provide solutions to small businesses all across the country.
I am inspired and in full support of any business that provides a success roadmap for businesses who don't believe they can press forward. That's what WDB marketing does, and I am here for it!
The lesson here: If you see a problem, believe that you are capable to provide a solution with the right team.