Often I will ask my clients the question “what would happen if tomorrow business as you knew it changed forever? Would you be prepared?” The answer to this question has never been more important than during the current crisis many of us find our business in.
So, let me share with you the 3 tips I share with my clients to ensuring your business can survive any obstacle thrown at it:
#1 – Make sure you know what your team members are doing (and more importantly how they are doing their day-to-day tasks)
It is great to delegate tasks and each of us has our own way of doing a task; some more efficiently than others. Often when as we add team members to our team it can become easy to lose track of how tasks are being completed. But what if tomorrow your team member was no longer available? Would you know how to step in and do their day-to-day tasks?
It is important that any tasks your team is doing follow a process as established by you. More importantly, as they find more efficient ways to do these tasks they take the time to update those processes. When you take the time to ensure you have up-to-date and accurate processes others (or you) can step in and do any task in your business.
#2 – Never give up the ownership of anything in your business
In today’s day of outsourcing, many business owners will work with others (often virtually) to assist with some of the tasks of their business. Some examples include website development, virtual assistant services and bookkeeping, to name a few. If you do not hold control of your web hosting, of your data files and any other intellectual property of your business you run the risk of losing valuable data.
If tomorrow one of your subcontractors was to fold up their business (or even die … believe me it has happened) and you do not hold ownership and control it will be very difficult (if not impossible) to gain back control. There are some really great sharing tools out there so make sure you are using them.
#3 – Consider the what ifs and create contingency plans
No one likes to think about worst case scenarios, but the best thing you can do for your business is to think about the “what ifs” that could affect your business:
- What if you (or a team member) got sick (or worse died)?
- What if one of your clients left? What if all your clients left?
- What if you were victim of a cyber crime?
- What if a recession started tomorrow?
- What if …
How would you handle the situation (or how do you want to handle the situation)? Establishing protocols for how this should be handled will save you time in a crisis. In a crisis situation you may not think clearly so it is important to think ahead and plan (and then keep your fingers crossed you never have to use the plan!)
Bonus Tip #4 – Make sure to build relationships with key people
It is critical to build a relationship with the following people who will be an important asset to giving you the unbiased advice you need in a crisis:
- A banker or other investor who can provide cash injections as needed.
- A team of advisors or Board of Directors who hold no financial stake in your business
- A trusted mentor, coach or business consultant
- An accountant who can provide financial advice
- A lawyer to provide legal advice
What other tips would you add to this list? Please comment below.
If you worry your business may not survive a crisis and want to chat about the exact steps you need to take to crisis-proof your business and how we can assist you, please click on the link below.