19 Apr Tips on how to prepare your business for success after Covid19
The world is experiencing unprecedented non-linear shifts, it will never be same as we knew it three months ago. Businesses needs to survive the current wave of lockdowns and other restrictions at the same time preparing for growth and building competitiveness after the pandemic which many expects have predicted shall be followed by a depression more severe than the great depression of 1929-1933.
Your business needs to survive during Covid19 but most importantly it needs to grow sustainably after Covid19. In other words, I am calling entrepreneurs to build resilient businesses that endure the current shifts, or any shifts should they come in the future. Non-linear shifts in and of themselves are not bad for businesses as they are opportunities to innovate. New products or new business models usually emerging out of such situations. Talk of the introduction of the internet, that has been the biggest shift in the past three decades, it resulted in many opportunities and new products and business models.
During this lockdown period I am advising entrepreneurs to take time to evaluate their businesses and prepare them for success. You can do this by analyzing your activities and group them into three groups;
1. Group one shall have all activities that are needed for current operations to keep going during the pandemic. This includes activities like ensuring that customers continue to be served during lockdowns, thanks to the internet for most businesses’ customer service can be offered seamlessly online without one leaving their house risking contracting the dreaded Covid-19. Another key activity is ensuring that revenue collection continue, and with electronic banking and mobile money, you don’t need to leave your house to make collections. The single most important thing that your business needs during this time is cash for survival, so make sure you collect all what you are owed or if you are like Fanset International what you generate even during lockdown, believe you me your customers are happy to pay you because they also need you to stay in business. It’s good for the ecosystem. Some may struggle to pay but it’s understandable, after all we are in this together, work out a collection plan with your clients. In group one ensures that you minimize cash burnout on activities that does not help your business to survive, after all we are in survival mode.
2. Group two shall be made up of all tasks and activities that you have been doing that you need to selectively forget. Sounds easy? It’s actually the most difficult to do because as entrepreneurs and business leaders, we do not want to change what we are used to do, we don’t what to challenge our previous asumptions. “This is how we have always done it”. It’s difficult to challenge yourself and your own assumptions. This is however what we need to build businesses that survive non-linear shift like the Covid-19 induced changes. If you have been doing meetings only in person, forget about that and embrace online meetings, then do you need that boardroom?? Maybe this is time to think about actually doing away with physical boardroom. If you are a shop and you have always enjoyed people walking in to buy, maybe it’s time to forget about that model and build a model purely based on online shopping, after all you can get more customers online than can ever walk into your shop.
3. Group three shall be made up of those key deliverables that you need for your business to be competitive after Covid-19. What is it that you need to be doing now to be a leader in your industry three years from now, five years from now and even ten or twenty years from now? Is it pivoting to online business or building a completely new business model?
Your role as a business leader is to allocate the necessary resources for that to happen. At Fanset International we have taken this lockdown to build a completely new business leveraging on our current business. We shall be announcing this in the next few weeks and I shall be writing about that and how it will help us remain competitive in the era post Covid-19.
Now that you have created and defined your three groups of activities, in my next article I shall take you through how to manage those three groups to achieve sustainable revenue growth.
About the writer:
Spencer Matonhodze is an entrepreneur, innovation and product development expert having developed and launched cutting edge technology innovations in at least twenty-one countries across Africa and the Middle East working with and for some of the big technology brands. He holds post graduate qualifications in Innovation, Design Thinking and Management. He can be contacted on email@example.com