We are entering uncharted territory as business owners.
It is important to prioritize planning over panic.
Many of us will experience challenges and set-backs. We’re also getting an amazing gift: pause.
How many of us were trapped in a ceaseless cycle?
Every day we had to meet customers’ demands, run a business and work towards our goals. We did all that while juggling our own health and wellness. I don’t think I’m going out on a limb by saying that described most of us. You may even find yourself tired from just reading all that in a few sentences. But the fact is many of us were living like that.
The gift of “the pause” allows us to take a moment to prepare our strategy. We have the ability to leverage a slowdown (or even shutdown) to set ourselves up for success.
To set your business up for success, follow this three-step process:
# 1 Triage: The Initial Assessment of Level of Urgency
Remember the “pause” we talked about earlier? The longer this situation continues, the more I want you to think of it as a runway.
Your business is taxiing before takeoff, so what are you going to do this time? Prepare for your flight. The runway provides time for a plane to build momentum, so this pause can do the same for your business. Use it wisely.
A key factor that will set your business apart from those that survive and those that thrive is your understanding of the situation. You want to be essential to your clients. Deliver them the most value possible. To do that make sure you are aware of the following factors during the downturn:
Don’t let this be an oversight. Know what your business spends in a month. A lot of little things can go unaccounted for. Once you know exactly what you have to spend, you’ll be able to know what you can save.
It’s difficult to plan for an uncertain future, but keep them informed-even if it’s on a day-to-day basis. Have a plan in place for how to keep your team and/or what you have to do if layoffs/ furloughs become necessary.
Talk to a professional. You probably have more options than you think. Talk to your bank, research grants and reach out to personal connections. Explore all the lines of credit available to you and your business.
How much money will you have coming in? If you have to put deliveries on hold, calculate where else you will get capital. Research sources and resources where you can acquire additional cash flow.
Weigh the options of investing in tech over real estate. Consider how transitioning to remote work may enhance your business. If that’s not feasible consider what space is necessary and try to prep for what the future will require.
How much can you produce? How long will it take you to recoup necessary supplies? Make back-up plans and have alternate source materials if necessary.
What do your clients need from you? And what can you give them? Take this time to access what you can deliver and how you can modify your business plan to make your services essential.
After you address these core stats prioritize your intentions:
Preserve other resources
Ideally, we will do all four, but this is just your initial assessment. Rank by what is most crucial to your business right now.
It will be different for every business.
If you're having trouble, use the previous factors to help determine where your business will benefit from the most.
#2 First-Aid: Begin to Treatment in Order of Urgency
As you begin to treat your business, think back to your priorities.
If you chose Preserve Cash:
Consider what expenses you can afford to cut. I always suggest referring to detailed monthly expenses. Sometimes there are obvious cuts like a subscription service you forgot to cancel before the trial period ended. Sometimes you have to dig deeper.Research comparable product substitutions or cut back on low-impact tasks.
Explore all your available credit. Everyone is experiencing set-backs on a global scale. But aid is out there. Grants and credit is available to qualifying businesses. Take some time to see what you qualify for. You can do independent research or even reach out to your bank or a financial advisor.
If you chose Preserve Jobs:
Prioritize staff retention by keeping workflow and communication consistent. You can’t have a staff on retainer if there’s nothing for them to work on. And if the workload does slow it is your chance to innovate. Explore new tasks and ways they can provide value. This is a team effort, so make sure you work together on ways to keep productive and profitable.
If you chose Preserve Clients:
Prioritize clients and make sure they are receiving excellent service and their promised deliverables. Do what you can to prevent any interruption in service and brainstorm ways that your business can remain essential to them.
If you chose Preserve Other resources:
Take any necessary steps to secure supply chain, facilities, etc. If this is your top concern make sure that you are doing everything you can to keep up with your physical spaces and products. This includes finding new distributors or real estate.
Feeling overwhelmed? We can help pivot your business plan today. We'll build an effective strategy so you can overcome and succeed.
#3 Rehab: Recovery and Working Towards Your Business’s Future
The current situation is lasting longer than anticipated. I have noticed that most of my clients have one three responses:
- Ignore everything and pretend it's business as usual (not an option)
- Hunker down and hope things pass by quickly (kind of risky)
- Pivot and Proceed (not always easy, but worth it when you do it right)
If you want to be a business that thrives in the new market responses 1 and 2 are not worth pursuing. Instead consider how exactly you can pivot and proceed.
This means you will have to alter your offer, your message and your delivery. Every business will have to evolve if they want to thrive. And it will look different for every business. Some businesses will require small alterations to thrive in the new marketplace. Others will require a complete overhaul.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s OK. It is a stressful time.
Our team is ready to help.
We will guide you. Together we can pivot your business plan so it's unique to your business and its needs. We can help you tailor your offer, message, and delivery to suit the market challenges your business is facing.
When you are ready, reach out. We will get your business on track to overcome and prosper despite current obstacles and conditions.
If you are having trouble knowing exactly where your business should be going or what you need to make your journey successful, we can help!
Book a free 1-hour Breakthrough Consultation with us.