DON’T GIVE UP

With all the uncertainty in the entire world right now, it’s easy to give up. The dreams you may have, the hard work you may have already begun, and the loss you may currently be experiencing, may all be overwhelming. It will be devastating for the economy as a whole and for the families associated. For some businesses this crisis will bring closed doors.  Even though doors close right now, they don’t have to be closed forever.

Saying, “I lost it all because of the pandemic,” is going to be heard. Honestly, there will be countless businesses that will loose it all. People across the world will need to rebuild businesses, supply chains, and relations again. It won’t be easy for anyone. However, people around the world can’t give up. We need each other. We have to learn, adapt, and grow again.

The most important thing to remember is that people, no matter what continent or race, have rebuilt their lives over  and over again for as long as people have existed.  There has always been wars that have destroyed whole cities, and natural disasters like volcanoes, floods, and tornadoes. Throughout history there have been many diseases that have killed an unimaginable amount of people like small pox, Spanish flu, Bubonic plague, cholera, Ebola, SARS,  HIV,  yellow fever, polio, and influenza, to name a few. Now, COVID-19 joins the never ending list of pandemics, epidemics, and plagues.

Adapting is a key part to success no matter what the causes the changes.Established businesses and long standing corporations are reassessing the way the do business in order to help the American people. They are doing business different, and not business as usual. Different is now becoming the norm. Businesses that are quickly finding ways to adjust in the current COVID-19 crisis are the ones that have more of a chance to persevere.

There are a few things to remember when times like these feel dark and desolate.

Reduce.

Reducing all the unnecessary expenses you can cut. Do you need to have all those subscriptions, fancy packaging, or extra supplies and inventory, just to name a few places to start cutting back. Make a list of all your expenses and decide what is luxury, nice or wants, versus basic essential.  Simple is best. The more you expenses you cut, the less you have to pay out,. The less you pay out means the less you need to earn to stay in business.

Re-purpose.

Re-purpose is a word most associated with keeping the planet green, or up-cycling. It’s the turn trash to treasure mind set. Think about what you have in your inventory that could be used for other purposes in your business or for your customers.  There are distilleries making much need hand sanitizer instead of whiskey.   Perhaps your company makes fabric products and you could change your manufacturing to fulfill other needed fabric items .

Adapt to the needs of your customers.

In times of crisis, the most sought after things are for essential needs. Think about food, shelter, safety, and hygiene.  For example,  during COVID-19, there are restaurants selling food supplies like a grocery store instead of preparing the food for restaurant patrons who are unable to dine in. This gives customers much needed grocery items that may be hard to find and business a way to continue to operate.  Restaurants who never delivered, are delivering food.

There are fabric stores giving away the materials for face masks to patrons  who will sew them and then donate them to hospitals.  I’m not saying that you have to give away things, but if you have the ability to do, I would bet that when things get better and patrons will remember your generosity in a great time of need.

Don’t forget those who have helped you along the way.

Some businesses are a one man show. You may not have employees. However, most businesses have anywhere between 1 and maybe 1,000’s of employees. Layoffs may seem like a solution for the business, especially if you think you have to close down. But what happens when things are better? Won’t you need employees to run your business again? Who better than people you know that know your business and won’t need training? In the long run, if employees know that they will get their jobs back when things get better can make a difference in starting back up again or having to close your doors.

Along with with your employees, don’t forget your loyal patrons. Once things start turning around in the economy, people will want to have the things they have missed out on and do things that they had to give up for a while. That means you need to be ready for them again.

Have faith and persevere.

Having faith means many things. It’s religious, it’s internal, it’s external, and profoundly unique to each person. No matter your belief systems, have faith in yourself and your abilities to be successful.  Believe in yourself and believe in those around you that are working just as hard as you are to keep your business going. If you stop trying, it’s gone for sure. If you can keep pushing through, adapting, changing, and bending, instead of breaking, you can still succeed.

There are ways to help you to help your business and your employees. Seek solutions, even if they are only temporary. Keep looking forward, keep planning. One  important thing that all successful entrepreneurs know is that you have to be able to adapt and persevere. Something will always be in your path, it’s how you deal with it that sets you apart to be successful. Stay safe, and keep going.