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Natural Awakenings Tucson

Business Owners Moving Forward Through and After the Pandemic

Aug 30, 2020 01:24PM ● By Tavi Meketon
For many business leaders today, the questions that keep them up at night can sometimes be the only constant in their lives. Where are the customers and will they come back? How are the team members and will they stay? We are living in a time when many business owners and their management may not be able to make decisions and assumptions with any certainty, and those that thrive on consistency and historic standards may need to refocus and regroup, at least temporarily.
Whether a single professional providing necessary services, an online store or a medium to large company, this is a time to reflect on where we are now, but also look toward the future. Should this be a time to re-evaluate our mission, vision and the “why” of our work? Perhaps it is time to dust off the Business Plans and see if they are still current, relevant and most importantly, are they able to sustain the future? Can our intent as an organization continue to be supported in this ever-changing landscape?
While a major challenge obviously lies in “reading the tea leaves” to determine what the future of certain products and services may be, a more important question might be whether leadership can indeed identify these changes, pivot quickly and reconfigure if necessary.
According to the Society of Human Resource Management, 52 percent of small businesses surveyed expect to recover to pre-COVID profitability in six months or less. This optimism is largely based on the innovations that have come from dealing with issues associated with the current foundations of business. Many businesses have invented new products, while some have discovered new ways to deliver them. Other businesses have created remote work policies that provide flexibility and in some cases higher productivity, while others have asked team members to learn new skills or cross train in order to meet the ever evolving needs of their customers.
The current social and economic situation may be a wake-up call for many businesses and an opportunity for others. Environmental impact can devastate or help to rebuild. Shifts in buying patterns, service requirements and cash flow undoubtedly effect an organization’s primary objectives, but can also dictate the future and open the doors to a new and better way forward.
Business owners should check with their team, review their business model and reevaluate strengths, weaknesses and the opportunities that may present themselves. Why are we here? How can we continue to serve our clients, customers and colleagues in a way that maintains our purpose and pushes us to the next best version?
Review key performance indicators and reset dashboards to include any new opportunities and/or unavoidable changes, look at all options to merge or partner with other complementary organizations, continue on the path with loans and federal assistance or in some cases, take a breath and look at potential exit plans.
Businesses that remain viable over the next few years may be lucky, proactive, flexible or all of the above. But one thing they may also need is optimism. It is easy to become entrenched, unfocused and impulsive, but seeing the future more clearly, although it may be scary, is sometimes a great way to maintain a positive outlook and provide encouragement to the team.
We must constantly remember that we are all in this together. There are others who experience the same situations and there are those who can help. Whether they are business consultants, team members, clients or trusted advisors, harnessing a team to provide feedback and resources so business owners can rethink, refocus and move forward can make all the difference.

Tavi Meketon, MBA, SHPR, PAFM, is Vice President of Strategy and Execution for C-Suite Impact LLC. C-Suite Impact’s primary objective is to provide businesses with personalized support to plan for the future. With different strengths and ideas, a best path forward can be found through a group of passionate individuals whose goal is to assist business owners and communities by connecting expertise and passion. Connect at [email protected].