Supporting small businesses during a crisis

We know that even at the best of times, being a business owner can be difficult. So, when Mother Nature throws you a curveball like COVID-19, it can feel daunting to figure out what your next move should be, and where you can turn to for help. 

There’s no rulebook for this situation, but we’ve scoured the web to find the most helpful online tools for business owners who are searching for reliable, accurate information. From business mentorship to finding out what government subsidies you’re eligible to apply for, have a look at the list below for help. 

Government support

The government’s official COVID-19 website should be your first port of call for questions relating to the wage subsidy scheme, what constitutes an essential business, and how you can support staff at this time. Whether you’re an employer, employee, sole trader or an essential worker, there’s tailored information to suit your situation. 

Find it here


In a time of crisis, turning to places like online forums can be a great idea. Share ideas, get advice and be a sounding board for other businesses in business advisory forums like Manaaki. 

Manaaki offers free, expert advice from more than 90 industry experts across New Zealand. The support network consists of business experts uplifting the mana of small businesses by helping them navigate COVID-19 uncertainty.

Find it here

Business Mentors New Zealand

Founded in 1991, Business Mentors New Zealand is the only independent national business mentoring service provider to the small business sector in New Zealand. The service enables small business owners to be matched with experienced businesspeople to help them through the issues their business may be facing. 

Find it here

NZ Business Support Facebook Forum

Another business forum that has cropped up recently is the Business Owners/Managers/Self Employed NZ - COVID 19 Support forum on Facebook. With more than 2,000 members around the country and growing, there’s sure to be someone in the same boat as you who can offer advice and support.

Find it here

New Zealand Small Business Owners Forum

Also on Facebook is the New Zealand Small Business Owners Networking and Ideas forum, which is tailored specifically to SMEs. With more than 6,000 members and a daily livestream for members, it’s a great place to get advice and connect with others while in isolation. 

Find it here

We hope you find this information helpful. Be sure to keep an eye on our Business Articles section of our website for more tools and tips to help you thrive through this time.