If the Global Pandemic isn’t the definition of a life-altering event, then nothing is. The spread of COVID 19 has change lives 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.
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 struggled and continue to wrestle with the financial impact of closures, restrictive health and safety requirements and changes to the way they did 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 stem the tide of any disaster. 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 coaching them through the development of future infrastructure to safeguard their businesses in the future.
This global event identifies some gaps in most small business’s practices. The lack of formal planning and the absence of some 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.
- Establish a comprehensive annual tax plan.
- Get professional financial and accounting support to ensure your accounts are accurate and up-to-date.
- Establish a relationship with a local bank and or a financial advisor.
- Formalize all your systems and processes that affect the cash-flow of your business.
- Create a comprehensive Disaster/Recovery Plan for the future.
- Establish an Emergency Cash Fund.
- Pursue additional lines of credit that you can access quickly.
- Enhance your online presence and digital interactions with customers are strong.
- Consider alternative or back-up suppliers.
- Establish robust CRM (customer relationship management) processes and detailed inventory control management systems.
- 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.
- Update your email practices, privacy and term of use policies and ensure you are adhering to the most updated federal and international requirements.
- Create meaningful connections with influential business leaders, local chamber of commerce principals and economic development organizations to tap into these resources more effectively.
- Consider establishing flexible scheduling for your staff for the long-term.
- Establish a feedback loop with your customers by creating Yelp or other review site accounts to stay connected with your consumers.
- Consider new sales and marketing approaches when traditional channels aren’t available.
- Establish safety and health standards and processes for the long-term implementation.
- Update your com Business description and account.
- Update all your social media accounts to reflect current conditions.
- Hire a business coach.
Whether in good times or in bad times, creating a more effective and efficient processes and procedures may not be “exciting” but based on current history critical.
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 consequences in the future.
To learn more about ActionCOACH and to connect with a local certified, professional business coach in your area, visit actioncoach.com today. Sign up for a complimentary coaching session and find out how a small investment in your present business can lead to a more profitable and secure future.