At JMO Communications, we work alongside essential global development organizations to tackle public health’s biggest problems. One such problem, one colossal problem, made itself known around the world in early 2020. It was then that the world began to realize that COVID-19 was an epidemiological threat unmatched in scope. A true public health emergency was, and still is, knocking on everyone’s front door.
Small businesses are struggling. Survival is on the mind, not only on an individual level, but also the enterprise level. The last several months at JMO Communications have been a time of evaluation and action. How have we supported our development clients in the past, and how might that look different post-outbreak? What should we emphasize? What do our clients and their beneficiaries need?
As a HUBZone-certified, woman-owned small business providing editorial, design, capacity building, and translation services to global development organizations, we realize the importance of communicating key health messages at the right time. Since our founding in 2017, we have worked to create a track-record of providing high-quality and personable communications services for the global development community. Successful business relationships are about continuing relationships, following up, and adapting to global climates to provide services deemed essential in that time. For JMO Communications, this has meant harnessing technology and innovation to serve our clients anywhere, anytime.
We help our clients enable performance of global teams by developing adaptable curriculum design, e-Learning modules, and virtual instructor-led training. More employees are working from home than ever before, leading us to emphasize trainings that a) allow managers to best enable employees in a virtual environment and b) facilitate remote technical assistance.
We have also been busy providing rapid-turnaround graphic design and translation services for COVID-19 projects to ensure key technical guidance and aware-raising materials are available. Breaking the chain of infection during a pandemic is time sensitive so we mobilize our team to deliver rapid (sometimes same day) turnaround for graphic design and translation services.
For example, we have designed guidance documents for the UN overnight in multiple languages, as well as translated internal communication messages for a large international NGO in Swahili, French, Burmese, and Spanish to help the leadership team reach global teams in their native languages. In a time of required isolation, this seemingly small step has united teams in ways that foster morale and promote understanding. Our involvement in these projects encapsulates our resiliency as a small business, our dedication to quality service, and our power to affect real change in difficult times.
Technology is both our burden and our blessing. Technology facilitates global travel and can be blamed for COVID-19’s rapid spread; however, technology is also what allows us to create meaningful products from our devices, fill the emptiness of a house with Zoom (or similar) calls from the comfort of our living rooms, and spread the knowledge that will keep us safe and, eventually, lift us out of this health emergency and into a changed, but enlightened future.
JMO Communications has navigated this challenge by maintaining and building upon all that makes a small business powerful and unique. For every near-unbeatable situation, there is an opportunity to come out stronger than before. We choose to adapt, listen, learn, teach, and, ultimately, grow so we can better serve our global development colleagues.