First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Alfiah Strohal: Thank you, we are doing well in Thailand. The Covid 19 hasn’t affected much to our business and life. We did not close our company. Life is great in Bangkok, and I am grateful for that.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Kiidu.
Alfiah Strohal: I am a mom of 2 beautiful daughters and CEO of Kiidu, how I started my company! I have travelled and moved extensively across Europe, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. In my quest to find nannies for my children, I observed how the caregiver industry worked across the world and noticed its drawbacks.
Untill almost 6 years ago, the only way of finding some helper was through word of mouth or some small advertisements at local newspapers. It was not easy to find a nanny or a helper who I could truly trust. That’s why I created Kiidu.
How does Kiidu innovate?
Alfiah Strohal: We have regular meetings weekly and monthly in the company. In these meetings, we try to capture all the ideas. We are open to any feedback, suggestion, and we share our thoughts.
I let my team develop their idea and be supportive if they need me to support them. We encourage my team to take some actions, and don’t blame them if it goes in a slightly different direction.
Additionally, we reward our team if they perform well by giving some incentives, and do regular lunch and dinner together.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Alfiah Strohal: Well, we’ve been adapting our business based on the current situation; there are slightly some circumstances that we need to adjust in our business like working conditions, hours, and environment.
We keep sending messages to our customers and audiences that we are still here and ready to serve them if they need our help nannies, maids, tutors, senior cares, and drivers. More so, we conduct Covid-19 standard procedure in our company and show our customers that they are safe even when they use our nanny, babysitter, tutor, maid, driver, senior caregiver.
We always brainstorm with the team and make a quick change and glad that we are back to the business and our team is growing again!
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Alfiah Strohal: As a small company, We need to make a fast decision to deal with uncertainties like the COVID-19. It was quite difficult to let some good employees go, but There was no choice. Because we were not sure how long covid-19 is going to take!
The lesson that we have learnt! I think Instead of letting good people go, we should have made different arrangements to stay together!
Covid-19 caused our business to slow for 2 months. There’s another way to react to uncertain conditions; we should be ready to face uncertain things and accept the outcome.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Alfiah Strohal: The reaction to stress can be negative or positive. It depends on the way you react and cope with it.
I share my thoughts with my team, and I don’t avoid talking about our difficulties regarding our business situation; just being able to share my concerns can help improve anxiety. Also, I do brainstorming time to think and come up with some fun or engaging activities. I also reach out and connect with my family and friends, run a lot to release my tension and do yoga to calm my mind and body.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Alfiah Strohal: Our competitors are the traditional agencies.
We use our uniqueness to communicate with our teams, customers and sharing our vision with them.
Branding is also very important for our business, and we keep motivating the teams to strongly align with the company’s values, give the best customer service experience, and the last thing is about telling our company story and why we created it.
Your final thoughts?
Alfiah Strohal: The women-owned business helps families worldwide by providing an online platform to connect parents with nanny, babysitter, tutor, maid, caregiver, and driver in an easy, fast, convenient, and secure way, either on-demand or full-time.