Hey there, business owners! Word on the street is that the economy might hit a rough patch. Just crossing our fingers and hoping things will be okay? Nah, that won’t cut it. We need to roll up our sleeves and get ready.
So, what’s the game plan?
I have some advice. How about setting up a ‘Financial Warning System’. In simple words? Don’t get caught off guard. A lot of businesses only watch the money coming in and going out. They miss the warning signs like stock piling up, customers taking longer to pay, or the rising cost of borrowing money. And guess what? They rarely peek at their balance sheets to see if they can free up some cash.
Here’s My Action Plan:
- Regular Check-ins: Set up monthly money check-ups. Look at your profit & loss, balance sheet, and cash flow. Know which parts of your business might take a hit if sales drop.
- Cash is King: In tough times, cash rules. So, think about how you can boost your cash flow. Maybe change how you handle bills, customer payments, stock, or deliveries. Consider drawing from your credit lines. And hey, do you really need to own all that heavy machinery or those cars? Maybe renting is better. And what about IT? Is everything up in the cloud? By outsourcing, you can switch from fixed costs (that don’t change) to variable ones (that you can control). That’s a lifesaver when things get tight.
- Know Your Value: I have a question for the bosses out there: Are you only looking at expenses? What about your sales forecasts? Focus on your main customers. Chat with them regularly. And on the cost side, know exactly how and when you’ll adjust if sales change. Here’s a shocker: about 20% of your customers might actually be costing you money. Time to dig deep and find out!
- Harness the Power of AI: Ever thought about getting a robot sidekick? Well, now’s the time! Artificial Intelligence isn’t just for sci-fi movies. It’s a game-changer for businesses. I am in fact big on this. AI can help you cut costs and make your operations smoother. Think about automating repetitive tasks, predicting sales trends, or even personalizing customer experiences. And the best part? You don’t need to be a tech whiz. There are loads of user-friendly AI tools out there designed for businesses just like yours. Investing in AI now could save you big bucks in the long run and give you that edge over the competition.
These tips are gold, whether we hit a recession or not. Following them means not just surviving, but thriving. And who doesn’t want a stronger, more bulletproof business? 😉
Marek Niedzwiedz, CEO @ aeXea Capital; Turnaround-Shogun™