An Ounce of Prevention is Priceless
The spread of COVID 19 has changed lives and businesses all over the world. Not only has it served as a reminder of how fragile life is, it has put a spotlight on the need for crisis and recovery plans that extend far beyond a natural disaster event. Knowing how to adapt and pivot is critical to surviving the crisis now and thriving thereafter.
Business owners world-wide have been adjusting, pivoting and in some cases panicking because they were not prepared for the extent of the impact the Pandemic would have on their operations. Scrambling to survive, business owners continue to wrestle with the financial impact of closures, restrictive health and safety requirements and changes to the way they do business. Many owners were surprised and were left reeling because they didn’t have effective plans in place to withstand the threat on their business. Sadly, many small business owners have lost the battle with the virus that has infected their business’ future.
Since mid-March however, ActionCOACH® certified business coaches have been working with businesses of all sizes world-wide to create plans to help them get ahead of the crisis curve. Using proven systems and processes, ActionCOACHes have been helping business owners not only outlast the effects of the virus, they are actively guiding their clients and coaching them through the development of new strategies to safeguard their business in the future.
This global event identifies process gaps in most small business operations. The lack of formal planning and the absence of fundamental guidelines put small business at risk. Because most business owners tend to be reactionary instead of being proactive, they don’t take time to establish some safeguards to fend of threats. It’s hard enough to keep the doors open under normal conditions, in times of crisis, if they don’t have concrete plans, they will see their business attacked once again.
What are some specific lessons business owners can learn from in addition to hiring a professional business coach? Here is a short of list of just a few measure business owners can begin taking today.
- Formalize all your systems and processes that affect the cash-flow of your business.
- Consider alternative or back-up suppliers.
- Establish a comprehensive annual tax plan.
- Get professional financial and accounting support to ensure your accounts are accurate and up-to-date.
- Update all your social media accounts to reflect current conditions.
- Consider new sales and marketing approaches when traditional channels aren’t available.
- Establish an Emergency Cash Fund.
- Establish a relationship with a local bank and or a financial advisor.
- Create a comprehensive Disaster/Recovery Plan for the future.
- Pursue additional lines of credit that you can access quickly.
- Enhance your online presence and digital interactions with customers are strong.
- Establish robust CRM (customer relationship management) processes and detailed inventory control management systems.
- Update your email practices, privacy and term of use policies and ensure you are adhering to the most updated federal and international requirements.
- Ensure your cyber security is robust and your business has adequate protection for its data and the information they get from their customers, suppliers and vendors.
- Establish a feedback loop with your customers by creating Yelp or other review site accounts to stay connected with your consumers.
- Update your com Business description and account.
- Create meaningful connections with influential business leaders, local chamber of commerce principals and economic development organizations to tap into these resources more effectively.
- Establish safety and health standards and processes for the long-term implementation.
- Consider establishing flexible scheduling for your staff for the long-term.
- Hire a business coach.
Whether in good times or in bad times, creating more effective and efficient processes and procedures may not be “exciting” but based on current history, they are critical to the survival of your business.
Back in the 1700s, Ben Franklin, one of our founding fathers was prophetic when he declared “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Take the advice and invest some time in preventative care instead of suffering painful consequences in the future. Reach out to your local ActionCOACH to receive professional guidance on implementing these actions in your business.
Want to learn more about ActionCOACH and our business coaching programs? Schedule a 15-minute discovery call. You can also contact me directly at 832-233-6825 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to working with you!