3 Fiscally Sound Steps for Entrepreneurs Getting Back to Business
Updated: Jul 10
Companies are getting back to business – which is great. But that doesn’t mean that they aren’t still in survival mode. The fact is, reopening for business doesn’t necessarily mean that things are going back to normal (just ask restaurant owners serving at a reduced capacity or retail shops managing lines outside.)
As a result, businesses of all sizes are looking at ways to work smart so they can ride out the pandemic’s impact. Below, we share things to think about as businesses re-open. The key is to resist being reactionary, and instead be proactive, as entrepreneurs navigate these continuing crazy times.
Related Post: Three Smart Strategies for Growing Your Small Business
1. Revisit your business model
Are you a retail store that now needs to think about serving customers who want to shop online? Do you offer a B2B service that your target customers might need to access – or pay for – in new ways? While it may seem scary to even think about switching up your business model during a pandemic, you just might have to in order to survive.
I’d challenge every business owner reading this to walk through the following questions:
A) What do we sell and who do we sell it to?
B) What is going on their world? Will they be willing and/or able to access our offering in its current form?
C) Can we hang on using our current model or do we need to change it up?
D) What must our model look like to continue to serve our customer base? Is there a brand new customer base who can use our offering now that the world has changed so much?
2. Examine your vendor/partner list
Can your partners support you if you change your business model? Or have their models changed to such a degree that they can't support you in any case?
If you’re moving to more of an online sales model, does your website support this? Can your agency do what needs to be done to get you ready to make this change quickly? Do you need to invest with a new marketing partner to help get the word out about changes in your business or to attract new customers?
Are your supply chain partners still in business? Have their payment terms changed? Do you need to ask them for new payment terms to match your new ways of doing business?
Will you now be shipping more product? Do you need to engage shipping, warehousing and/or fulfillment partners? Will your existing suppliers take this on?
Are you extending your business reach? Do you need sales or channel partners in new geographies? How about a marketing agency with a broader geographic reach?
Everything is on the table now – work with your vendors to see if they can support your business needs in the new normal, negotiate, and work to find the best fit.
Related Post: Marketing Strategies for Entrepreneurs
3. Be careful when cutting costs
It may seem tempting to just cut costs across the board, but be careful. It is preferable to grow your way out of the crisis, rather than slash costs to the point that you risk cutting things that actually help your business to grow.
For example, if you need to communicate a new business model, and promote your offerings to new audiences, does it really make sense to cut your marketing budget? Or shrink your sales team?
By all means, look at expenses and ways to save money on things like utilities and subscriptions, but remember to run major cuts through your financial models to see how they could affect your long-term financial health. Not every cost cut is a smart move. Your bookkeeper can help run models and look at expenses so you're cutting smart while leaving room to grow.
Related Post: Why Hire a Bookkeeper
Entrepreneurs have an opportunity to grow their business
Although things still look scary and unpredictable, there’s a real opportunity for entrepreneurs to pivot and actually grow their businesses. It may be slow, and it may take time, but we are hopeful that smart strategies can help most businesses to survive.
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