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Coronavirus Business Tips From PCI Professionals: Part 1

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With some coronavirus-related restrictions being lifted, there are more people open to resuming pet set service. That can be so exciting for many people! As a business owner, this is a huge plus for you and gives you the chance to do what you love. However, that’s not the case for everyone. Today, we are going to feature some pet professionals who had some business advice to share and how they are navigating their current situation.

We hope this can help you enhance your business or give you some ideas on how to operate moving forward. You got this!

Happy dog walking

Meet Karen

Karen, a dog trainer, explains how she has taken the time to focus on her business checklist.

Is there a project or task that you’ve been putting off? Now may be the time to pick them back up and see what can be done. You never know what can be successful unless you try! Take the time to do some research or connect with fellow pet professionals in your area.

What steps are you taking or plan to take to get your business back to the state it was in prior to the pandemic?

“Undertaking projects that had been on the back burner (e.g., logo, updating documents, sprucing up my website, considering a podcast). I am also establishing an online learning opportunity/community on Facebook to complement in-person private training (or stand alone),”



Is there any additional information or advice you would like to share with others who are in your same situation?

“Keep moving, do something. Don’t let inertia overtake you. I started a bunch of things and some didn’t go anywhere but trying anything was better than wallowing in the fact that my business evaporated for a few months. It’s now getting back to pre-pandemic levels,”

Karen’s last bit of advice to pet professionals is to always keep moving. Put in the work, experiment, and review your efforts. Your hard work can pay off at the end!

Meet Carmen

Carmen, a pet professional involved in grooming, walking, sitting, and training, has focused on her business and to praise the little wins.

There could possibly be an area that could benefit from improvements. Maybe there is something new you could include and test out. Make any necessary changes! By taking the time to improve your business, you can make sure it’s in good shape before the busy times strt again.

What steps are you taking or plan to take to get your business back to the state it was in prior to the pandemic?

“The business was getting a bit radical pre-covid. I used my time wisely and made changes to staff, scheduling options, services, the website, payment options, and communications.,”



Is there any additional information or advice you would like to share with others who are in the same situation?

“Take the slow times to prepare and better yourself for the fast times. Use this time wisely to question your business, brainstorm new ideas, and put them to the test. Also praise the little wins and be flexible. This can only better quality of service,”

Just like Carmen mentioned, praise the little wins and be flexible. Sometimes things don’t according to plan and you need to roll with the punches. Take into consideration that it won’t always be this way. Every business owner experiences ups and downs.

Meet Lisa

Lisa, a pet sitter and walker, suggested that keeping in touch with current and past clients can be helpful.

Personal messages can mean the world to clients. It shows that you’ve made an extra effort to reach out and are thinking about them/their pets. When they are ready to resume service again, your clients know who they can turn to!

What steps are you taking or plan to take to get your business back to the state it was in prior to the pandemic?

“I have a Facebook page and reach out through text to clients. As a micro-business (It’s just myself and my husband) we offer a level of personal contact that larger businesses may not be able to do. I see many clients in my own neighborhood out walking their dogs. Never pushing. I simply remain a trusted dog lover they know they can call. I send messages to the dogs via the owners wishing them well. It’s the small things that they remember,”

 



Is there any additional information or advice you would like to share with others who are in the same situation?

“Do not give up on your past clients. You’ll be surprised at who comes through just when you think you won’t get another booking,”

The last bit of advice we want to highlight from Lisa is to not give up on your past clients. Making sure your client connections are positive is essential. They may even recommend you to their friends!

Meet Elizabeth

Elizabeth, a pet sitter and walker, wanted other pet professionals to know they still have a chance of gaining new clients and diversifying their business.

Increasing your marketing efforts and spreading the word about your business may help you gain new customers. All you need to do is ask! Just like Elizabeth suggested, you can pass out business cards to local businesses. It’s quick and easy! Social media is another great way to advertise your business and get some exposure.

Many people find diversifying beneficial because of the extra income stream. Consider looking into other businesses you can run and see if it works for you! Many pet professionals are making homemade dog treats. For more information on how our partner can help you in this endeavor, check out our blog.

What steps are you taking or plan to take to get your business back to the state it was in prior to the pandemic?

“One opportunity I did randomly find, a new client works at the local hospital, and I asked her to put some cards out at work for patients who need petcare. The hospital is really strict on such adverts, but coming from an employee, it might work out. I’m also passing out some cards at a new local farmer’s market,”



Is there any additional information or advice you would like to share with others who are in the same situation?

“Diversify your business. I also run a Hipcamp.com location (like airbnb for camping) and it’s been very busy…Make sure you have a Google listing for your pet sitting, and a Facebook page too. Social media can work.”

Meet Laraine

Laraine, dog walker and owner of Two Chicks And A Pack, shared how her business is taking extra precautions with her customers.

Making sure your clients feel comfortable to use your service is essential. Laraine brought up a lot of good points to keep your clients and your business safe. You may want to consider implementing these things in your next visit! For more information on coronavirus and the impact it can have on pets, check out our blog.

What steps are you taking or plan to take to get your business back to the state it was in prior to the pandemic?

“We are practicing contactless pickups, wearing masks and gloves, and sanitizing gear before we drop our dogs back off to residences,”



We hope you found this advice helpful! During this unprecedented time, it’s important to keep in mind that we need to focus on things we can control. For pet professionals, like yourselves, you can read informative articles and look for ways to improve your business (to name a few). At PCI, we are here to be a resource for you. If you have any questions about your coverage, feel free to get in touch with our licensed agents via phone, chat, or email.

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Comparing Employee Dishonesty Coverage & Bonding

PCI’s employee dishonesty coverage is similar to a bond, but there may be some key differences to consider.

Employee dishonesty coverage:

  • Can be purchased in the same transaction
  • Doesn’t run credit checks
  • Provides $10,000 per occurrence and $25,000 aggregate coverage

Bonds may differ from our dishonesty coverage by:

  • Checking your credit during the application process
  • Having a “Conviction Claus;” Often bonds won’t pay on claims unless there is a conviction
  • Many require you to reimbursement the bonding company after a claim is paid