A recently released index saw business confidence in April rebound from its record low base in March.
Although confidence is still down, the uptick is a sure reflection of the effectiveness of the JobKeeper and other stimulus announcements in giving businesses the best chance of their COVID recovery and ultimate survival.
With our current health position being better than expected, and restrictions being lifted, it’s time for business owners to make plans for their recovery.
Firstly, it will not be business as usual. Growth will be gradual. The world is a very different place. On the positive, we will have learned new things, become more inventive with our offerings, and adopted new technologies.
If you managed to stay open, or have since re-opened, that’s great. If you’re still closed, but you’re receiving JobKeeper payments, you should now have your whole team working (at least part-time, so it comes at little or no cost) and take the opportunity to teach new skills, create new products, assess technologies, identify new markets and improve processes.
Hopefully consumers will now appreciate the benefit of buying local and businesses should make the most of this.
On the negative side, unemployment will be high, consumer spending will be restrained, and you’ll be on a tight budget. So you’re going to have to be amongst the best in your industry to get a decent share of business.
Customers will reset their choices and you can’t assume their immediate loyalty. You will need to once again build interest and awareness in your brand and products. Marketing will be crucial.
It all starts with planning, and now is the time. Not a complicated in-depth plan, but a one-page business plan that outlines how you’ll navigate through the awakening of the economy. Perhaps start at the beginning, because it sort of is. If you were a new business entering the market, how would you go about it?
Do a SWOT analysis as part of your planning. How can you use your JobKeeper subsidised resources to eliminate your weaknesses and prepare for your opportunities?
Think about what you’ve learned since restrictions have been in place. Do you still need all of that office space? Are Zoom meetings more efficient? Is your online platform as good as it could be? How can you better satisfy your customers’ needs?
Finish with an action plan. Who will do what by when? Give some responsibility to key team members and let them run with parts of it. You might be surprised.
Over the last couple of months we’ve had to think differently and learn to be agile. We now need to build on that to strengthen and perfect our adaptability, ready for whatever the world throws at us next.
Contact us if you need assistance with any aspect of planning for your COVID recovery.
Author: Mark Douglas