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How Entrepreneurs Can Adjust Their Businesses To The New World Order

Jul 17, 2020

Author: Chastity Heyward (President- Sylvan Learning of Temecula) 

It is no secret that the Covid-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on the world. The impact of the pandemic on international trade is evident and affects not only the companies involved, but also society as a whole. From small-business owners to the consumers themselves, everyone is affected by the current global situation.
Experts have warned that Covid-19 will have devastating effects on the global economy, with some predicting it will be worse than what was experienced during the financial crisis of 2008. Large companies, small- to midsized enterprises and the self-employed are facing an uncertain horizon in which they will have to face a multitude of challenges.
Given the current and upcoming situation, many entrepreneurs have found themselves in a dilemma. Business owners are unsure about how to pay their staff and keep their businesses running at an optimal level. There are questions about how to maintain jobs despite the drop in external demand and, therefore, in sales and production. It's a challenging situation.
This pandemic has mercilessly exposed the profound failures of labor markets around the globe. Companies of all sizes have already ceased operations, reduced hours of work and laid off staff. Many are on the verge of collapse as shops and restaurants are closing, flights and hotel reservations are being canceled, and companies are choosing to work remotely.So, how can you bounce back after the pandemic?
Assess the level of damage to your business.
This is the first step that every entrepreneur should take before making any decisions. It is important to assess how deeply the pandemic has eaten into your business. This will give you insight into the financial situation of your business and the level of damage, and it will help you map out a suitable recovery plan.
Revisit your business plan.
Unfortunately, a lot of entrepreneurs have seen their business plans ripped to shreds by the pandemic. Things will change even after the virus is gone, and as an entrepreneur, you must adapt, rather than remain in the past.
New opportunities have sprung up, and entrepreneurs must take advantage and tailor their business plans to cater to the new market. This is a time to restructure, set new goals and motivate your team to push harder than ever before. The goal should be to come out stronger and remain relevant after the crisis
Get funding if necessary, or survive without funding.
Undoubtedly, a lot of businesses will need funding to jump-start their operations after the pandemic. If necessary, entrepreneurs in the U.S., especially, can look toward applying for loans from the Small Business Administration, Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans, among others.
The funding is limited, which will prove to be a challenge during this critical period. Nevertheless, not getting funding is not the end of the world. A lot of businesses have not been lucky with loan programs, but there are other ways entrepreneurs can keep their businesses afloat. Entrepreneurs must focus on two ultimate goals: to manage cash flow and to ensure that money keeps coming into the business.
It is pertinent to identify and cut all nonessential expenses. This is a time when innovative thinking can be crucial. The pandemic has created new opportunities, and entrepreneurs must study the market and identify them.
You can retool your business to maximize online sales and create a one-of-a-kind experience for online consumers. It is also important that the entrepreneurial community comes together at this time. Business owners can try connecting with business experts, other entrepreneurs and business associations in a bid to seek guidance, find out what they are doing and share ideas.
Be innovative, and look out for opportunities.
Innovative thinking is more important than ever before in this present global situation. Things are changing fast, and only businesses that adapt will remain relevant after the crisis is over. The pandemic has created new opportunities entrepreneurs must be willing to identify and explore. For instance, if foot traffic to your business has decreased significantly, consider shifting toward or improving your e-commerce offerings.
Entrepreneurs can also observe new trends during this period and diversify to keep cash coming into the business. Some small businesses, for instance, have begun the sale of handmade face masks.
Assess your market.
The present global situation has changed a lot about the world economy and how business is being conducted in every industry. Entrepreneurs are advised to carefully assess the changes in the market and how it can affect their businesses, while also identifying new opportunities.
Communicate with consumers, and adapt accordingly.
It is expected that the crisis will cause a change in customer behavior, which might remain even after the crisis. For example, more clients are leaning toward remote channels. So entrepreneurs must communicate to understand the changing needs of their clients, while also studying trends and adapting accordingly.
It is pertinent that entrepreneurs keep their staff, clients, investors and partners informed about how they are responding to the crisis, including approaches and the strategies to keep the business afloat during and after the crisis. This gives room for stakeholders and clients to share their ideas and fears. It eliminates any form of "surprises" when decisions are made, and it shows that management is committed to protecting their interests.
Prepare your business for a future crisis.
The Covid-19 pandemic is a global situation that every entrepreneur needs to learn from. It's not a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence, but something that can happen again. This is why it is important to have a plan B (and even a plan C) to secure your business against a future crisis.
A great way to do this is by setting up an emergency fund that you can inject into your business to keep it afloat in case of a shock. Entrepreneurs can also consider training staff to work more efficiently in a bid to reduce operational costs. Other options can be to start paying down debts and trim nonessential expenses, among others.