Happy final Wednesday in level 4 lockdown!
Next Tuesday, some parts of New Zealand’s business community will breathe a small sigh of relief as the country moves down to its level 3 response to COVID-19. This slight loosening of restrictions will bring a small amount of reprieve to businesses that can operate with a skeleton staff and those who can trade online.
But, it goes without saying that we’re not out of the woods yet. And if there’s one thing to take from this lockdown it’s the power of resilience, which brings me to this week’s GROWisdom from author and psychology professor, Angela Duckworth; “Enthusiasm is common. Endurance is rare.”
Endurant, or resilient, people do two things well. They communicate and they are open to and prepared for change.
We’re coming to you this week with tips on how you can achieve both for your business as we continue to navigate both the implications and opportunities COVID-19 is bringing.
Hang in there team, the KFC drive through re-opens in just 6 more sleeps.
Cash Is Still King…
Crisis or no crisis, this is a universal truth and now, more than ever, we should all be taking the time to revisit our cash flow status to ensure we come out of COVID-19 restrictions as robust as possible. The better your cash flow, the more flexible and resilient you are able to be. There are things we can all do right now to improve our cash flow, as well as actions we can take further down the path of economic recovery. I call these ‘survive and thrive’ measures.
- Create a realistic reset of your cash flow expectations. What’s coming in? What can you be invoicing for? Can you change payment terms?…
- Make sure your accountant and banker are your ‘best friends’. If you haven’t already, pick up the phone and connect.
- Balance collections, survival and relationships – remember to play the long game with important customers.
- Watch that ROI. Every dollar spent must generate cash & profit
- Double down on profitable sales and marketing. If you can, now is the time to invest in profitable initiatives.
And Then Thrive
- Invest in digital/ eCommerce, if COVID-19 has taught us anything, it’s that no-one can afford not to anymore, it is all about the customer and how they want to interact.
- Customer Data is a valuable asset – re-sell, cross-sell and leverage it every way you can.
- Leverage reduced competition – now’s your time to shine!
- Build networks and reduce single point sensitivities.
- Increase efficiencies by considering alternative business models.
With cash the number one worry for most NZ SMEs right now, our partner, Futrli has come to the party with a no-strings-attached, free 3-month subscription to its cash flow management tool. Check out more about the offer below.
Don’t Worry, Get Planning
While we may now be able to see the light at the end of the level 4 tunnel, there’s still a huge amount of uncertainty lingering. How long will we operate at level 3? When will NZ reopen its borders and what will customers’ spending power be like? For this reason, a strong communication plan must sit right beside cash flow analysis in your restart arsenal. And by communication, we don’t just mean a token email to the business to let them know you’re trying your best. You need to be communicating closely with all your stakeholders. This includes:
- Checking in with key customers. How are they doing? What changes are they forecasting? Can you help or collaborate to ease strain?
- Updating your employees about the business. Check in on the wellbeing of your greatest asset – your employees. Whether your business has gone quiet, or you’re an essential industry run off your feet, your employees and their families are impacted and need to hear from you about what plans you have in place to navigate this pandemic. Communicating honestly on the current state of the business allows your employees to contribute and to be part of the solution; you will probably be pleasantly surprised with what they come up with.
- How are your suppliers going? Have they been impacted? Should you expect changes to reliability of supply? What about price changes? All of this will impact your own ability to trade, so don’t leave anything to chance. They might be aware of a change at a competitor, which could present an opportunity for you.
- Gather intel: Check on competitor activities – are they pulling back on marketing in an effort to reduce costs? If so, do the opposite if you can. Now is your chance to shine and make the most of reduced competition. Can you fill a gap that has opened up due changes with your competitors?
The Helping Hand You Need Right Now
Our partner, Futrli has come to the rescue with a no-strings-attached, free 3-month sign up to its awesome cash-flow tool ‘Flow Pro’.
This tool quickly identifies hidden poor payers, calculates the right time to pay bills and helps you understand how to make the right decisions to keep more of your cash in your account. There’s no better time to give it a go.
All you need to do is Register Here and then enter the discount code: COVID_GROWNZ