According to a Yelp report, as of August 31, 2020, 163,735 U.S. companies closed down. That indicated a 23% increase from July to August alone. For surviving companies, the need to stabilize your business and rebuild operations from the ground up will be a challenging mission from now on. Most importantly, business owners must identify critical areas of uncertainty to foster resilience and relevance. Is it possible to build resilience after COVID? It is but will require discipline and a commitment to succeed. Here are a few tips.
Map the crisis to suit your business
The first step to building resilience is to map out the crisis and identify how your business was affected. As generic as the economic challenges were when COVID first hit, no two companies faced the same trials. For example, while some businesses had no digital platforms to push their operations, others faced a complete halt to their supply chains. Nonetheless, about 90% of U.S. companies experienced the ‘losing control’ phase. Therefore, the most critical lesson to derive from this misfortune is to create bespoken strategies that complement your line of business.
In other words, prepare adequately for unplanned events in 2021 and beyond. It helps you to remain motivated. Nobody expects you to make a miraculous return to operations as before. Besides, you will be doing your company a lot of good by implementing a well-thought-out business continuity plan. Moreover, your success with the next (and new) normal will depend mainly on a robust program to withstand the virus and the economy.
Improve your supply chain channels
Due to the pandemic, you probably now know how a minor or significant business shakeup can disrupt your supply chain. Optimizing your supply chain means adjusting the bottom line right up to the top. It is also an adaptive strategy that has moved away from trimming down warehouses, logistics, distribution centers, etc. Instead, the new way is to increase these outlets in more local areas. This makes it possible to rely on more than one supplier if you need to change them. For example, companies such as Eplogistics.com make it easier to handle and optimize your business’ supply chain channels.
Embrace remote and flexible working
Organizations that acted swiftly to lockdowns had a better engagement with employees. Being able to weather post-COVID storms means you now have a better appreciation of how work could be. If there should be another lockdown, having a virtual workforce will drastically reduce the risks of productivity loss. Moreover, studies have shown that remote workers tend to be more productive than in-house employees.
As a survival strategy, institute flexible working schedules that enable your workers to perform from home whenever necessary. Besides, you will remain in very active competition because other business leaders have done (and are doing) the same thing. The question now is, how differently can you do this? Empower your adaptive workforce and create avenues where each person can provide constructive feedback on what works (or not).
As a business owner and operator, understanding the unknown is a challenging mission to take up. However, tapping into such uncertainties is what you need to build resilience, remain relevant, and respond appropriately in the future. After turbulent times, scenario planning becomes a powerful tool for businesses.