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For almost two decades I have seen many different types of financial challenges for businesses including my own. One of the scariest moments of my life was the financial crisis of 2008/2009 as I had never witnessed or had to manage a business through a market correction. It was high speed learning and years later the lessons are still relevant not just for myself but in seeing and helping businesses manage their way through a tough spot.
One of the first things to know if you find that your business is in a tough spot is to know that you are not alone. Part of running a business means you will have hit tough spots. Many entrepreneurs and individuals running businesses that have never had to deal with a correction or serious problems don’t have an easy point of reference that they can look at to figure out what to do next. In fact many times a business doesn’t know its in trouble until it is already neck deep in outstanding accounts payables with little or no accounts receivable. Maybe the cash of the business has disappeared over a series of months because sales were not able to keep pace with expenses. Whatever the reason for the trouble there are many different ways to solve your problems you just need to take some time to work through them.
Is there good news?
The good news is that a business is usually stronger and more profitable when it comes out of a tough moment. There is no easy way to discover what you have to work with until you are forced to. You may find yourself reviewing expenses or profit margins or cross sell opportunities that will collectively add more to your bottom line. You always have a choice to make and when your business is in a tough spot you can use the moment to be better or to move on. If you choose to be better you may not believe how great your business really is and you may even find a new interest in it.
A great way to get perspective is to get out and talk with other entrepreneurs or people you know who have run businesses that have experienced problems. In chatting with them you may realize that your situation is not as unique as it might seem. If you can find a way to take a day or two off and explore the ideas or decisions that need to be made to make sure your business survives you might be surprised to see what you discover. It’s not easy executing on ideas and decisions in a tough moment but the moment will pass. The real question is: when the moment has passed what do you want to be left with and what has to happen now to ensure that you get what you want?
My goal is to get up every day and contribute to the lives of business owners and entrepreneurs who need someone that understands what they are going through. Let’s chat if you (or someone you know) needs some help with their business.