There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted business owners as never before.
For some it has required a ramping up of activities to meet the unprecedented demand. For others it has meant that they have had to pause and adjust their operating approach to adapt to a new normal. And for many it has required a complete overhaul of their business in order to survive.
The pandemic has taught owners how to manage a crisis. This lesson however, has come with a cost – relinquishing the control over what, in many cases, they have spent their lives building.
Take Back Control
Where to start taking back this control can be daunting. And although much is being said about ‘getting through this together’, you may feel quite alone as you begin the process of getting back on track. But there is a way to cut through all the confusion and ambiguity.
We believe in keeping it simple and taking one step at a time. That getting through this uncertainty requires distilling things down into a series of progressive actions that allow you to take back control. We describe this process with four words.
Rethink, Revise, Reset, Rework
Our FourWord™ approach is about focusing on the opportunities ahead of you, rather than the chaos you are leaving behind.
Rethinking is about accepting what has changed. You may not be able to alter the external factors, but you can control what happens inside your organization. Sit down with your staff and re-evaluate your opportunities and threats. Whether it is the world around you that is different, or customer needs that are changing, it is important to understand what strategies and policies you need to change, which ones you need to keep and what you need to throw away
Spend some time revisiting your business plan. Based on what has changed, how do you need to revise that plan and make it relevant in the current environment? Assess the resources you have within your organization. Ask yourself: what can I do with what we already have? Are there gaps I need to fill? You may find that you will need to restructure your finances or adjust your exit strategy in order to take into account the timeframe required to rebuild the business.
Now that you have revised your operating plan, it is critical to get your stakeholders – customers, employees, investors and family—on board with your new direction. Communication is key in times of change. Continually updating everyone on your progress will build the commitment you need to execute your revised plan.
The final step is to implement your revised plan. Identify the new priorities you have set for the business in order to achieve your goals. Establish a defined schedule with specific deliverables along the way and redeploy your resources as required. You may need to look for external help or develop a stricter budgeting schedule as part of reworking your plan. Remember to celebrate your successes along the way.
You’re Not Alone
The COVID-19 pandemic is a huge challenge for business owners, and likely the biggest crisis you as a business owner will ever face. Despite this, it is possible to take back control of your life and your business. At BTA, we can provide you with the help you need to achieve success whatever your transition needs may be. We have developed a complimentary, 17-point diagnostic tool that will help you determine how and where COVID-19 has impacted your business. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will help you work through what you need to do to take back control.