There are small business owners reading this, who will absolutely thrive in 2020.
They will survey the current crisis and identify improved ways to operate. They will look for opportunities to radically increase their value to the marketplace, based on the landscape ahead. They will adapt to the new needs of the people they serve.
And they’ll not only grow exponentially, they will become more useful, more valued and more cherished by their marketplace than ever before.
The reason this opportunity exists, is that most small business owners won’t do any of that.
They’ll wait. They’ll sit tight. They’ll keep doing what they always do and hope things get better, before they run out of time, money or credit. Just like others did in the 2007/8 financial crisis.
It’s interesting to see how differently small business owners act, when faced with the same situation. They tend to fit into one of two broad groups. Some will thrive. Some will freeze.
- Thriving: Those who thrive will do so by adapting their approach and helping others with the crisis we face. The thrive strategy is a core focus of my work with clients right now. It should be your focus too.
- Freezing: Those who freeze don’t have a strategy. Things are moving fast. So failing to adapt isn’t even an option… let alone a viable business strategy.
Thriving: Where to begin?
Look at the services you provide and the people you serve, not based on their usual needs, but their needs moving forward.
As I learned from working on thrive strategies with small business owners recently, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Strategies that are spectacularly effective for some will be ineffective for others. I’ve needed to piece together individual strategies with my clients.
A useful place to start, is to check your range of services, opening hours, payment methods and client acquisition strategies. Also, check your marketing messages and advertising, etc. What worked fine until now may need to be replaced with more suitable alternatives.
Listen intently to your clients and the marketplace you serve. And keep listening. Things are moving fast and their needs will change and so will the opportunities around you. Be prepared to adapt because it isn’t going to be ‘business as usual’ for a while.
However, it’s your business.
You’re in control.
The winds will certainly change, but you set your own sail.
So don’t freeze.
Because you can thrive if you choose to.