It is a rough world out there in the economy and the "real world". What can you do in the world of commerce to keep your business cruising in 2009 – if not simply alive and treading water?
First of all focus on the long run. There were people and companies even during the dark years of the "dirty thirties" and the major economic downtown – if not depression of the last century who looked ahead and knew that the good days would return once again. It is only a matter of time and mindset. It is amazing at even when people think that it is all over – the universe is expanding it is all over, what the point ?, that the economy can turn on a dime in a short time period and rebound. The resilience of people, especially the ability to be innovative and as well stick to it ness of American people, workers and personalities can do wonders and accomplish what can seem to the seemingly seeming tasks. A rebound can happen in the shortest of time periods as well. Count on it and take these measures and beliefs as truisms of the highest accord.
Still what can you do "until things turn around"? First start your business again. Act as if you did when you first started up – full of the highest and greatest measures of targeted work, intrinsic enthusiasm and boundless energy. Next, regardless of always being prepared and ready as well to "make that sale". It turns cash flow. Remember people run with the herd, most of all they want to reassure. Business is synergistic. It all works together. Business done builds and partnerships more business. It is like two gas stations at a corner will do the business overall of four. On top of that with cash flow your suppliers can be paid promptly. Everyone wins on this one.
Always remember that attitude counts. Along with attitude may be more aggressive pricing. That is you may well have to offer lower prices on products. Customers are hurting too. They can not afford to pay what they used to. Well not always. On top of that they may well have options and offers from your competitors that may well be very attractive and tantalizing to switch. Why give them the chance. Now is the time for spadework, to build and enlarge your foundation and reputation. Don not be shortsighted and try to make up volume either by charging more or even trying to overcharge those unwilling customers who come by, or are even in a bind. It is shortsighted in the long run. Totally.
If you can think of anything – work to provide your customers with "real value". It is all in a long run view. Long term value is always the best policy. You may well be tempted to cut corners – either on their end or even yours. This falls under the descriptive term of "false economy". At some point, not in the too distant future, cut corners will come back to haunt you. You may even have to bite the bullet and "do good" to repair and take care of problems. the worst if you lose a customer to another supplier and vendor, due to requests or work that you either feel is not in your customer's or your own best interest it is a wise choice. you will see that customer back – all the wiser and more appreciative of your product and services.
Lastly a downturn can be a time for planning and growth. Systems can be improved and revamped. Training and updates can be done. In business, in the new millennium, it is not often about costs so much and investments in a monetary sense but about time. Years ago we had lots of time but little money. Not long ago you may well of been in the situation of the reverse – lots of cash flow and even profit, but little time. During the current financial downturn you will have lots of time, and less cash. Well for the moment. One last point which is bedrock, do not do anything foolish out of panic. Maintain your ethics, morals, your work ethic and most importantly your reputation. Always think positive. Think for the long term and the home run.