In the wake of a crisis, businesses suffer and especially small businesses. Nationwide and international crises are even worse since the whole region or the globe is affected. From lenders to customers, a crisis moment may spell doom for your business career.
It is important that small businesses know what to do during a crisis. But knowing is not enough, the businesses need to do what is required. But how? Here is how to protect your business.
Access to cash is one and the most challenging part of a small business. Running a business is a risky and unpredictable journey and this renders the small and upcoming businesses more vulnerable. To combat the short term challenges posed by a crisis, businesses should advocate for more efforts to provide liquidity and keep the business solvent.
Crisis periods should not bring your operations to a standstill. But rather shape you into appreciating the contribution of technology to your operations. Training your staff on remote working early enough is a necessity for sailing a crisis period. Encourage your staff to enhance remote working through teleconferencing features such as TeamViewer, skype, zoom and many more.
For businesses, no matter the size, liquidity is a necessity. The cost of the services offered or goods sold is primarily the wages or salary paid to staff. Debts and loans are common in small businesses and can create more financial pressure on businesses. With demand for goods and services going down at times of crisis and obligations for salaries being a reality, many businesses opt for layoffs to ‘balance’ the equation. In order to help small businesses cover payroll expenses, a relief plan is a necessity.
Meetings and travel expenses drain a better part of a company’s earnings. During a crisis time, cutting the less necessary expenses is an order if the business aims at sailing to the other side of the crisis- perhaps the after-crisis time. Postponing meetings or holding them virtually through teleconferencing platforms helps in cutting down costs. Also minimizing travel reduces the risk of staff being affected by the crisis. The covid-19 crisis, for instance, minimizing travel and encouraging virtual meetings reduces the risk of staff being exposed to infection.
In most cases, crisis attracts all, both the business staff and customers. To keep your customers updated, provide transparent information about what your business is going through and how you are trying to get over the crisis. Customers usually empathize with brands facing a crisis, provided you keep them updated on what is going on. More often, give them encouragement and tips on how to defeat the crisis- if it affects them.
Crises come and go, and there is always the after-crisis time of recollecting and stabilizing operations. Talk to your suppliers, investors, partners and most importantly customers to know their take and advocate for their safety too.