We are all worried, more so small business owners.
Sitting at home, wondering when we will be able to resume our normal lives, there’s one thought that crosses through every small business owner, entrepreneur and SME sector businessperson.
How will my business survive this?
It’s a concern that rallies millions of small business owners together. A concern that might mean closure or change of direction or even giving up on your venture altogether.
That’s easier said than done – what about those who have invested their time, effort and funds in building their business? Never thinking that a calamity of this magnitude would close down societies in a manner never thought of before.
But there is still hope.
There is always hope – the world has bounced back from calamity before.
And the worldwide do it again.
In the meantime, what you need to do is to sit down, take stock – and check these tips on how you too can survive the storm.
Re-think every aspect of your business –
You have a lot of thinking to do so it’s good to put your business cap on.
What aspects of your business can you re-do or re-model?
Are there costs that you can trim and services that you can combine? Maybe you can redirect the service or product that you offer towards a new need that didn’t exist before.
Evaluate all systems and look at ways on how you can minimize the impact and continue your business.
Look for new opportunities –
There is always opportunity in the post-calamity period.
Look for new opportunities and new ways of doing your business. Are there new needs that you can address within your existing business plan?
Are there new customers or new needs that would have occurred during this period?
Is there opportunity for your customers to still want your products and services in the post-COVID-19 era?
Maybe you can add value or enhance what you are currently offering or maybe you can re-do the scale – it is certainly worth your time to sit down and think these areas out before it is too late for you to do so.
Stay connected with your customers –
It is always a good idea to stay in touch with your customers during the lockdown. Drop them a text and ask after them – so that you will still be top-of-mind when this ends.
Share with them some information that might be relevant for them and for you as a business owner. That way, they will always remember you when the lockdown eases and normal life resumes.
Draw up a short term plan –
One way of overcoming the crisis would be to plan your resources and the allocation in the short term. This is very relevant for the financial management and resource management.
For a small business, this is vital.
Plan how you aim to overcome the short term pitfalls and how you will manage the next three months until things get better.
Ideally, your short term plan must address everything that can be mapped out in enabling you to stay afloat until normal is restored – taking into consideration that even after the lockdown ends, it might still take some time for your former business operational levels to resume.
Be honest with yourself about your business –
Prune what you need to prune and cut what you need to cut – you must be honest with yourself in dealing with facts and figures. Maybe your business won’t survive the aftermath of this. Maybe it will and maybe it will take some time. Don’t allow yourself to be guided by pity, anger or emotional fall out.
Be honest with yourself and empower yourself to do what has to be done if your business is to survive.
In the end, as entrepreneurs, we must have our ear to the ground and be guided by practical realities.
There’s no point in wishing that things would get better or that it would go back to what it was before the virus invaded the world.
What we need to do is to be pragmatic and realistic in ensuring our businesses can and do survive the storm.