Doom AND Gloom.
If you turn on the news, experts will tell you we are going back thirty years. The world as we know it will be for the worse, businesses will fail, and no-one will have any job. The same was spoken during the last recession, and the one previous to that, and predictions of the apocalypse have been making the rounds since centuries.
The human world, despite what many say, is still the most evolved species and if there’s one thing we know better than anyone else, its survival. While the gloominess for businesses is undeniable, it is not of any help. In times of crisis, our true characters are revealed. With the right mindset, strategies, and focus, we will come out of this stronger and better than before.
What can you do to tackle this crisis better you ask? Well, here’s my few cents on the matter.
- Purpose: Let’s get real. What was the actual reason you got into this? What made you quit that job and venture out into the unknown? It could be your boss, the feeling of freedom, financial prospects, or something you had that you could provide value with. Go back to the source. Why did you start? If the purpose, the why is strong, you will overcome all odds and come out stronger.
- Whatever It Takes (WIT): You feel overwhelmed right now. New clients are hard to come by, old accounts are drying up. Your marketing is not giving you the result, because let’s face it, the world has a pandemic on its mind. In this environment, the only thing that you should be focussed on is not going under..survive at any cost. Do whatever it takes to stay afloat..you may have to let go of your employees; you may have to scale down your office expenses; identify every dollar that is not earning and make it go away..for now.
- Go broke: Go broke. From your office to your personal expenses, look and reallocate your resources; this is a great time to be a minimalist. As a young business, every dollar matters right now. Control the urge to go for that family holiday right after this pandemic is under control. Get your family on the same page and live below your means.
- Pick up the phone: Pick up the phone damn it. Dial-up your network, your existing customers, the ones you could not convert. Talk to them, ask for business, ask for feedback. Talk to your suppliers..speak with everyone you can. Create frequency, create heat. Do not cower, do not contract in your activities..go ballistic.
- Email and social media marketing: This is a great time to experiment with content. Triple the frequency with which you post on media handles..if you were sending one mail a day..make it three. You need attention right now. This also allows you to experiment, tweak, and play with the tone, content, and frequency with which you reach your clients.
- Let go of your ego: So you are the social media expert, the influencer with thousands of likes, the consultant, the big shot. Nope, you are not. You become an expert, the advisor, or the influencer based on what you do. Don’t let the tags you have given yourself stop you from going to every possible prospect and then offer your services and if required offer it at a discounted rate. Look, the worst thing you can do right now is to do nothing. Lack of action, frequency, and movement is a killer of will, confidence, and determination. In famine, the lion eats grass.
- Employees: If you are a firm with lots of employees and it’s getting really really hard to keep them, let them go. But when, you, as a leader, get your feet on the ground, you inspire people. Ask your employees whether they would like to work on commission. Let them pick up projects in a different domain outside your organization but also offer them commission based work. Keep them afloat, help them survive, as they help you survive, and together you will come out of it stronger.
- Innovate: The greatest casualty in good times is innovation. As the saying goes, necessity is the mother of all invention. Similarly, a recession, a depression, should push you to be innovative, creative in every aspect..from sales to digital, from identifying new opportunities and new avenues to evolving into a more efficient and lean workforce.
How we do something indicates how we do anything. When you won’t let some crisis defeat you, crumble your life to pieces, why should you let some pandemic do that to your business?
Let your purpose guide you and you will, for sure, come out of this better and stronger.