A 7-Step Plan to Keep Your Business Afloat Through the Pandemic—According to a Risk Management Expert
The escalating coronavirus pandemic has been rapidly affecting businesses all over the world. Most have been forced to scale back with lockdowns in place to flatten the curve, but others, unfortunately, had to shut down entirely.
The number of U.S. businesses that closed as of March 23 is 40% more than the figure on the same date in January, based on real-time analytics by scheduling site Homebase. Small business owners are yet to see a silver lining to this crisis. According to a recent report from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) that was released on March 23, about 76% of them are negatively affected by the coronavirus outbreak; an increase of 23% from 10 days ago.
Businesses are waiting for more clarity on what the local and national governments can do for support and until when the mass lockdowns will last. But in the meantime, risk management expert Nicholas Bahr says that there are strategies that they can do to prepare themselves for reopening after all these.
Having helped businesses navigate through geopolitical, terror, and climate risks for 35 years, Bahr says that now is the apt time to turn risks into opportunities. He notes this 7-step plan for enterprises to achieve this.
1. Care about your people
Make sure to communicate with your employees robustly and frequently. Empathize with them and understand how this affects their personal lives. Also, try to reassure them whenever possible by telling them how you plan to give them support through these tough times.
2. Set up a governance system
To streamline your decision-making process, set up a governance system that focuses on the data rather than emotions. This involves 3 levels: the immediate, medium-term, and long-term. The immediate level involves the people and your day-to-day business. The medium-term is how you deal with potential lay-offs and cash conversion. While the long-term tackle the risk of a major economic impact.
3. Assess the risks
For those who already have a risk assessment, you may have to set up a new one because that may no longer be suitable during this situation. Focus on safety measures, hygiene, and how you can safeguard humans, finances, operations, and technology during this pandemic.
4. Develop an external communications plan
Bahr emphasizes that trust is your biggest commodity during a crisis. So, make sure to provide reassurance to the general public, customers, and stakeholders that you are taking steps to help fight the outbreak—and even helping in any way you can. Social media is not only a great platform for external communication, but you can also get ideas from your customers.
5. Evaluate the supply chains
Assess whether your customers remain customers and know what they want and need from you. From there, you can talk to suppliers about what they can offer while still being cautious if they are over-promising. If you’re tight on cash, try to find ways to barter your products or services with others.
6. Go over operational risks
Look over the state of all the aspects of your business operations like kitchens or factories. Are these good to go once business goes back to normal? Come up with a pre-start checklist that you can tick off for your assessment.
7. Be productive during your downtime
With businesses scaling back on operations, owners may have spare time on their hands. Try to make the most out of it by developing new ideas for your services and procedures. Involve your staff in the process to help them feel valued and productive.
More in Finance & Business
Berlin Has Provided The Homeless With Accommodation and Full-Board Meals Amid Shelter-in-Place Orders
Governments around the world have ordered lockdowns and shelter-in-place mandates over the past few weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Non-essential...April 14, 2020
Selena Gomez Spent $4.9M For This Mega-Mansion Custom-Built By Tom Petty
Singer-actress Selena Gomez has been quite busy these days. She recently dropped her most recent album titled Rare, five years after...April 13, 2020
Here’s How You Can Save Your Retirement Fund From Collapsing as the Stock Market is Crashing
If you retired in 1982, chances are that your savings were divided into stocks and bonds, and if you took out...April 10, 2020
Worried You Can’t Pay Rent Amid the Pandemic? This Might Help You Out
Back in February, 28-year-old Ximena Kilroe, together with her husband and a roommate, thought they found the perfect home to rent....April 6, 2020
Let’s See what the Fuss about Jennifer Love Hewitt’s New $6 Million Pacific Palisades Home Is?
Jennifer Love Hewitt just bought a new home in Los Angeles. The home is brand new and is bought at the...April 3, 2020
DJ Khaled’s Over-the-Top Florida Mansion Has a New Owner
It’s a “No Brainer” that American DJ, producer, and record executive DJ Khaled is one of the most over-the-top celebrities right...April 2, 2020
Julia Roberts Sells One of Her Three Malibu Homes for $8 Million
Pretty Woman star Julia Roberts has grown a collection of real estate properties in the same area in California for the...April 1, 2020
Here’s How Coronavirus is Driving Mortgage Interest Cuts
The global pandemic coronavirus has caused a major disruption to the economy, bringing Australia to another recession after almost three decades....March 27, 2020
Should You Use Your Business Credit Card Amid The Coronavirus Pandemic? Here Are 3 Tips to Back You Up
There’s no question that public safety should come first before profit, but this can cost small business owners some serious financial...March 26, 2020