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Great Tips to Help Your Business in Turbulent Times

by AndrewSmith
Help Your Business

Every business faces a sink-or-swim scenario at some point, so it’s a good investment to learn how to float before the wave hits. Here are some tips to help you stay in business when times turn tough.

Secure your cash access

Quality cash flow is critical to staying afloat, especially for small businesses. Your company must always have access to cash resources.

Start by visiting a bank or loan office and informing yourself on what you need to get a business loan approved. Consider opening a line of credit ahead of time. This will help you prepare for any sudden and short-term cash gaps.

If you’re a small business owner, line up a few alternative capital sources as backup. Consider arranging private loans from friends or family, liquidating your stocks or other assets, or even dipping into your own savings to weather the harsh times.

Maintain quality

Product quality is ultimately what keeps your customers and therefore your revenue. Don’t fall into the trap of cutting corners to save some money. You should absolutely reduce costs where necessary, just be smart about it. No matter how tough times are, do your best to maintain the quality of your finished product.

Address the perpetual investments

This is the so-called “small stuff”, the day-to-day things which are easy to delay or disregard. Stop that. Start dedicating attention and resources to everything that impacts your business, whether it be minor or major.

Minor impacts include ineffective ads, hard-to-find stores or offices, poor parking, poor access. Anything a customer might face on their way to your door and change their mind. Major impacts include supplies and equipment.

Stay up to date on maintenance and new technology. This is especially important in industries that rely heavily on machinery, like agriculture or oil and gas. Review the condition and age of the smaller, often-overlooked components. Think valves, rotors, impact absorbers, monitoring equipment. Take special care of pieces that influence workplace safety, e.g. various gas lift mandrels or harvest blades.

Supplies come down to costs and quantities. For example, if your industry is administrative, check your office materials paperwork. Haphazard orders can slowly but steadily drain your accounts. When was the last time your supplier raised prices? You might need to replace them.


Review your staff

Not to be callous, but you do have to get due return on your investments. After all, payroll is one of your biggest expenses. Make a point of a thorough staff review. It’s best to do one during normal operations. If you wait for a crisis to assess your employees, you will get skewed insights. The point is to ensure the right people are in the right positions.

There‘s an expression regarding business owners: “They are penny wise but pound foolish.” In other words, hiring the cheapest workers will cost you much more in the long term. Invest in exceptional staff early on. Also, periodically interview new people. This gives you a backlog of talent you can bring in when needed.

Consider the big picture

Compare the problems your business is facing. We usually prioritize the most obvious issues. That makes sense logically, but not always strategically. Unless your company is in an acute crisis, it’s always worth it to examine the background of the bottleneck.

Let’s say productivity in a sector dramatically fell. You might be tempted to discipline or replace the underperforming employees. Stop and look at it top-down instead.

Did their hiring manager vet them properly to begin with? Who trained them and how well? How does their supervisor interact with them? What is the relationship between that sector and your clientele? By addressing these less obvious questions, you can prevent the problem from reoccurring with new hires.

To sum up, keeping your business afloat in turbulent times comes down to preparation and maintenance. Have a few avenues of cash access lined up for rainy months. Optimize your workforce. Invest in equipment and resolve “minor nuisances” while they’re still minor. No matter what happens, maintain the quality of your product or service, and approach operational issues from a top-down, big-picture perspective for long-term success.

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