Why I refuse to be negative about 2020…

Ok! There are a lot of reasons why we could all be negative about 2020 but what’s the point? I set my recruitment business up in early 2018 knowing the sector always takes an immediate hit in an economic crisis, businesses panic, stop recruiting, restructure based adjusted budgets and start making redundancies.  So, after a successful 2019 we may just break even this year with a slim possibility of a small profit if the next quarter strengthens now a vaccine has been found, ‘but’ I refuse to be negative about 2020 as I have learnt so much over these past 10 months.

How to run a business during an economic crisis.

Stay informed. Keep up to date with all local government business support schemes, tax relief and guidance that may help support your business

Update your financial statements. To maintain good decision-making in a difficult environment, you must keep up to date with your finances what is coming in and what is going out

Risk assessment of the possible impacts on your business. Estimate the financial impact of the Covid crises and make a plan of what you could do to replace revenue quickly

Perform a financial health check on your business. Knowing your business’ financial health assists … deciding what you can do now to support your business’ position through the crisis.

Keep your team informed, it is hugely important that everyone understand the possible impact on the business during difficult times and that their input is extremely important. Let them know they play a key role in keeping the business in profit or minimising losses, do it as a team

How to run and motivate a team through hard times. 

At times this has been tough especially when you are trying to motivate yourself, never mind a team of people.  So, I did the following: –

We focused on employee engagement by doing weekly calls and updates.  I kept my door open, or should I say my phone on if anyone needed my help.

Be honest

Keep employees involved. People just want to help, especially in tough times.

Work as a team. Brainstorm.  Ask them for ideas on what they think we can do as a business to keep the revenue up

Recognise employees’ contributions and hard work during times of crisis. Making a cuppa and buying a packet of biscuits to share goes a long way

How to win business through the pandemic

Amazingly we have managed to engage with new business with new clients, how?

We have tried our absolute best to be there to support all our existing candidates and clients by providing the best possible service, time to listen to people if they need to talk, updates on the market to help people remain positive, blog updates on a number of different subjects on how to adjust to an economic crisis.  The feedback that we have received has been so positive and our network has helped us so much by referring and recommending the work that we have done for them. People have gone out of their way to support our small growing business.

We also have a robust marketing strategy which has also brought in new business. Having a clear marketing plan is key, keep it light, keep it interesting, keep it relevant, keep your marketing updates regular so people don’t forget you, and keep your branding clean and fresh.

Having to make really hard decisions

Making commercial business decisions may include losing staff, this is probably one of the hardest things that I have had to do especially when you have a good working relationship with an employee, ‘but’ you have to take the personal element out of decision making and think about what’s right for the business and the effects on the remaining staff, if people in the team aren’t on board with your crisis plan it will affect everyone else and impact the business.

How to keep yourself focused and challenged throughout an economic crisis and overcome self-doubt.

Routine is key – my work ethic has always been if times are quiet ‘there is always something to do’ something to focus on, even if it is a mundane admin task, I can get myself into the task and get the job done.

The quote ‘There is nothing to do’ is not in my vocabulary.  My job is to find openings for new opportunities in businesses and I apply this to my every working day which has helped me maintain my motivation throughout.  Don’t get me wrong I have had bad days – I am human after all but after a couple of days I’ll get focused again and follow a path.

So, to summarise why I refuse to be negative about 2020 – simple, the key to learning and developing in business is to navigate through different situations, whether they be challenging or finding a different outcome to plan you originally set.  If the first plan does not succeed find another path!

The final part to the jigsaw in enduring difficult times in business is to have a strong team of people around you that you trust, which I am extremely fortunate to have.