When the economy is going strong, and businesses are enjoying great growth, it is easy to get a little complacent, and even a little bit lazy. Right now, geo-political, economic, and domestic issues are threatening to impact businesses in the US. Are you ready for uncertainty? If we have a recession, are you and your business protected? Do you know how to help your people? Business leaders can take several steps to prepare for uncertain times.
This insight from Mary Kelly of Productive Leaders
Evaluate the business.
Do not be complacent. The first step in preparing for a recession is to evaluate business and identify areas that may be vulnerable. Conduct a thorough analysis of the company’s financial health, cash flow, and revenue streams to identify potential areas of weakness. Be brutally honest. Can you survive without revenue? For how long? This will help you identify which areas of the business may be most impacted during an economic downturn.
This seems basic, but many people are spending money, and they do not realize it. During a recession, it is important to reduce expenses wherever possible. Identify areas where you can cut costs without impacting the quality of your products or services. This could include reducing marketing expenses, reducing inventory, subscriptions, and renegotiating supplier contracts.
Increase cash reserves.
What if you suddenly lose a big client? What if we are in a recession? Business owners should increase cash reserves to provide a buffer during times of uncertainty. This can be done by reducing expenses, increasing prices, and closing more sales.
Diversify revenue streams.
Where else can you generate revenue? Are you leaving money on the table? Remind your current clients what you do. Explore new markets, products, and services that could generate additional revenue streams.
During tough times, customer loyalty is critical. Business owners should focus on improving customer relationships to ensure customer retention. This is just one of many reasons why providing excellent customer service is so important. During tough times, your clients do not want new suppliers. They want you to give them the right solutions.
Business owners should stay informed about economic conditions and trends that could impact their business. How do you find valuable information? Sifting through all the news can waste time and result in frustration. Try attending industry events, chamber of commerce events, reading industry publications, and networking with other business owners.
Review your rates.
The Fed is going to raise the discount rate again, which means interest rates for business loans, mortgages, and auto loans are going to increase. Taxes will increase. This means budgets are going to remain tight. Make sure you know your numbers and review them often. Do you need to raise your prices?
Guard against fraud and hacking.
When the economy gets tighter, some people get desperate and less-than-honest tactics become tempting. Take away motivation and opportunity for fraud and hacking. Make sure you have the right systems in place to protect your workplace.
Insights from Mary Kelly
Mary Kelly is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy and spent over 20 years on active duty in intelligence and logistics. She retired from the Navy as a commander. She has master’s degrees in history and economics, and a PhD in economics. Mary Kelly has EXPERIENCE, and it’s this experience that helps your executives and your audiences change the way they view crises, challenges, and changes. Mary turns obstacles into opportunities. Mary was a professor for over 30 years, and she loves helping others navigate the economy, build their businesses, become even better leaders, and accomplish more in less time. Combining inspirational military and corporate stories, unforgettable energy, and a little comedy, Mary delivers customized and memorable programs every time!
Ramon is an in-demand small business expert, who has started 5 companies and sold 3 companies. He’s the publisher of ZoneofGenius.com and BWCDaly.com. Ramon is a motivational keynote speaker and event host. Check out his latest book, “Celebrity CEO”, all about personal branding for entrepreneurs and small business owners. Get help from Ramon for your business at CelebrityCEO.com/coaching . Learn more about Ramon at RamonRay.com