Do you have a clear picture of your business’s future? Learn how successful business leaders create a clear picture of their future, and use that information to achieve their goals, even in the midst of turmoil.
Successful businesses don’t happen by accident. Successful business leaders don’t rely on luck to achieve their goals. In fact, when it comes to creating the future of their companies, their visions are so clear that they even deeply consider all of the potential pitfalls they might face in an effort to solve those problems before they even occur, rather than solely focusing on the good side of being a successful business.
Visualizing your business in such a thorough manner not only helps you identify the things you want out of your business, it helps you create the steps you need to take to get them by also identifying the many obstacles that you’re going to face in that pursuit.
Create a daily routine that keeps you connected with your team, your customers, your vendors, and the local business community. This helps to create a routine, a routine that you can refer back to when business emergencies occur. It also keeps you at the center of multiple communities that are all vital to your business’s longevity. It keeps you, and your picture, in focus.
Control the controllable
Keeping your picture in focus is also a great way to choose where you want to focus your energy. There are a million and one things you could be worried about, but how many of those worries are worth your time? Are they things that you can actually have an effect on? And is solving these problems something is ultimately good for the business? What should you do?
First, of course, you need to stay calm in the midst of a business emergency. Your entire organization is looking to you for leadership. It’s your responsibility to set the tone for how it is that you’ll be facing this crisis as an organization, on an emotional and operational level. It’s not time to step back, it’s time to step up.
Not only is your team expecting a heightened level of leadership from you, but your customer base will be, as well. If they’re also going through a period of uncertainty, your ability to maintain a sense of calm, strategic focus, and operational endurance could mean the difference between them jumping ship or staying with you for the long haul. These are largely controllable factors.
Educate yourself to better position yourself
A few of the most important things you can do during this period of uncertainty include:
- Staying educated and informed on current events as they relate to your business
- Reviewing communication and recommendations from pertinent industry authorities
- Paying close attention to updates from your local Small Business Administration and state and local business support services
- Staying on top of your accounting records — this is an absolute must
- Making sure your books are accurate and up-to-date at all times, as your financial health is key
- Maximizing your liquidity
Why is this last factor so important? Understanding where your revenue comes from, staying on top of receivables and even offering discounts for early invoice payment, in addition to paying off debt or asking suppliers for extensions can free up much-needed cash during disruptive periods. Keep yourself nimble when these situations occur. Staying on top of your financial health and the current market dynamics will help you understand where your picture of success fits into the new landscape of business.
Strategically cut your costs, keep your people
You should also consider creative ways in which you can reduce expenses that don’t include cutting back on the lifeforce of your business: your people. (Of course, there are times when cutting down headcount has to happen, but that’s not the focus on this blog — we’ll cover that topic another time.)
Here are some recommendations for driving down overhead that don’t include reducing your headcount:
- Review historical spending to identify cash-saving oppo
- Lead by example. Show the team what you’re willing to sacrifice in order to keep operations running smoothly
- Have a shipping department? Work with your fulfillment team and your customers to see if there’s any wiggle room in delivery to save cash
- Delay equipment upgrades, where necessary
- Minimize utility waste
- Explore negotiations with suppliers, vendors, creditors, and even your landlord
These considerations create the opportunity to free up cash, and they can also help to identify areas of bloat where funds that could be used more efficiently and profitably are being wasted.
Again, this keeps your picture in focus because you’re recalibrating the business to its most essential elements. Use the lean or more disruptive times to influence the business in more fruitful periods so that you can make more strategic, more profitable investments.
10X businesses have a clear picture of their trajectory. Do you?
Do you have an actionable, measurable plan to achieve your personal, professional, and financial goals? If you’re ready to scale and grow, contact Brandon Dawson to learn how.