Survival By Doing

Andy Kocemba

If your “business road” has felt a little bumpy over the last six months, you’re not alone. Through the pandemic and social unrest, business owners have faced realities they never considered before.  But thriving through challenging times might be simpler than you think.  Here’s how to simplify your approach and strengthen your operations when the going gets tough.

  1. Take the Opportunity to Re-focus: Business owners like to be busy. When times are good, they can often busy themselves with activities that aren’t crucial to their business.  A challenging season provides a chance to set aside those distractions and re-focus on what is truly important - namely, what it is that you do/provide, and how does it meet a customer’s needs.  Often these reflections remind business owners just how simple their concept really is, and how it may have become over-complicated through the years.  By becoming laser-focused on who you are and what you do, you will be able to put all your energies into critical activities through this season.
  2. When Crisis Management is Over: This past March, business owners had a lot to tackle.  Covid-19 brought PPP loan applications and establishing new, on-site protocol as well as remote worker capabilities to the forefront, all while tasks like budget management and re-designing sales presentations became crucial.  But you know what?  For those owners who acted quickly and tackled it all head on, there just as clearly came a time where those tasks were done.  Covid-19 might continue, but the crisis management stage is complete.  If you have managed the crisis, allow yourself to move on, and as I mentioned above, put your energy into doing what your business does.  It’s time to get back to providing that product or service instead of continuing to manage a crisis.
  3. The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same:  Once you’ve crossed off all your crisis management tasks, there’s a truth that becomes apparent - your business reality isn’t all that different.  Some outside forces might have changed, but your internal processes and metrics are still there.  Continue to improve, measure, and grow in the same ways you did back in 2019.  Make your business more efficient.  Grow sales.  Dial for dollars.  Through your life as business owner, you’ve come to know your business inside and out.  You know what it takes and what you should be focused on.  Trust your gut and keep it simple.  Action is more important than trying to look for answers from some expert somewhere. 

This is a world of action, and there’s not a ton of new information out there.  This season more than ever, businesses that thrive will do so because they take action, not because they read the right book or learned a new secret.  Once you’ve taken the necessary crisis management steps, put your pedal to the floor and get going!