“If you are going through hell, keep going.” This phrase has helped me time and again when facing challenging circumstances. Giving up is the worst thing that we can do. To reach the other side, and there is another side, you have to stay the course. Here are some suggestions to help make recovery efforts less painful and may even help your business thrive in uncertain times. This isn’t about taking advantage of a state of emergency or price gouging, it is about engaging the American and entrepreneurial spirit to never give up and support your community and employees by staying in business not just to survive, but thrive.
· Document SOP’s- Take the extra time to document your standard operating procedures (SOP’s) including each job function in your business. This can help you find efficiencies and is a key component to succession planning and business continuity, but many businesses just don’t have the time to do a thorough job and maintain them.
· Succession planning is critical. - Speaking of succession planning, prepare now to lose many of your employees for up to 2 weeks at a time and permanently for some of them. Begin cross training immediately. Everyone should have a backup.
· Steal shamelessly – Pay attention to what your competitors are doing and copy them if it seems to be working well. Why re-invent the wheel? If you see communications that they are sending to clients which speaks to you, use them and customize them to your business. Still….be careful of trademark and copywrite infringement. Our legal system has not stopped, people are still suing each other.
· Take the help –take advantage of tax breaks, low interest rates, free offers, government and community support. Stay engaged. This can help you stay afloat until you can adjust to the post-pendemic “new normal”.
· Beware of scams – There are groups, individuals and companies out there who will e advantage of the state of emergency. First, don’t be one of them. Second, just use common sense. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. That said….many companies are truly just trying to help or keep themselves afloat. Tempest Risk Management and Pride Business Strategy are both offering free, 1 hour consultation to any company in need. Will we follow up with those clients in the future about engaging our services? Probably, but this is not an ulterior motive, it is an additional one.
· Knock out that wish list – We all have one, the 100 things that you need to do but never seem to have the time. Well….now’s the time. Refresh your website, bolster your social media presence (or start one), deep clean the kitchen or re-paint your entrance. Take training courses online or view webinars. Join a group on LinkedIn and start networking. There are many things you can do for less than $500 that can make the difference in your business survive now and THRIVE tomorrow.
· Get creative –
· Think counterintuitively – can you lower your prices or delay payments and fees? What can you give away for free now that could help you in the future? Besides feeling good about yourself and helping your community, customers and clients will remember your goodwill when spending returns to normal. That said, don’t give away the farm, you still have a business to run after all. Be open to bartering. Do anything you can to keep your doors open, even if they are virtual doors. 40% of businesses do not reopen after closing their doors.
· Get ruthless with expenses – Stop doing anything that is not necessary and ruthlessly cut expenses.
· Network like your business depends on it….it does – If you have strong network, engage it now. Talk to other business owners, share ideas and worries. Consider a barter exchange with other businesses. Networks such as ITEX barter can be valuable in these circumstances. This is an excellent time to partner together for the greater good.
· Think medieval – this is not meant to scare, but prepare for things to get worse. Have a plan for a shifting landscape. Have a though exercise with yourself and your staff imaging how your business could function in the 1800’s. How would you operate? What could your new normal be and how would that look?
· Prepare for the other side as well – Start preparing now for restrictions to be lifted and a possible new normal. You may have to move quickly to recoup your losses. Look at things from your markets perspective and offer products and services that are higher in demand.
· Keep your head up – Try and stay upbeat and positive. You will have days and moments that you feel defeated and overwhelmed but you have had these moments before and survived. You will survive this as well and if with a little luck, hard work and creativity, you can thrive in this brave new world.
Good luck, be smart and keep it simple
Tempest Risk Management LLC
If you are interested in engaging Tempest Risk Management to provide Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery consultation, email email@example.com to schedule a no cost, no obligation consultation.
The modern business environment demands more than just a well-curated product or service. The operational efficiency of an organization plays a crucial role in determining its success.
Barry Adams of Alpharoot provides an overview and suggestions for navigating insurance for cannabis companies in a highly regulated and legally gray area industry.
Branding is the process of setting your business apart from the competition. It's how you control how people view your business and connect with it. Branding is used by major companies, from Coca-Cola to McDonald's. However, small businesses can also use it to influence public perception.