Business owner 911 response to COVID-19

Below is a list of response business owners can take to weather the current economic system.

  1. Cash. Cash. Cash. Know where you are and if you don’t forecast cash, start. Build a worse and best-case scenario.  You can develop a cash headroom report using our template.
  2. Build a model of your revenue streams that are at risk. Decide of who in your client/customer base might choose to stop using your services or buy your products in this downturn. Highly negative impact is expected in these industries:
    • Education
    • Hospitality/Lodging
    • Group Travel
    • Warehouse/Distribution
    • Mass cultural events (concerts, sports, etc.)
    • Brick-and-mortar retail space
    • Civic Institutions
    • Personal Services (salons, spas, medical aesthetics, etc.)
  3. Consider supply chain disruption. This you may have already experienced. Look for alternatives/ backups.  Inform clients and customers if delays are anticipated.
  4. Apply for an SBA disaster loan. Just because you apply doesn’t mean you have to take the loan, but if you apply earlier it is more likely to be funded.
  5. Ask your bank for 6 months of interest only on your existing loans. A 9 to 12 month period would be ideal.
  6. Refinance any debt, such as real estate loans, where the current rates are .5-1% or more below your current rate. Lock in as long as you can. Once interest rates rise, you want the current low rates set.
  7. Develop a special promotion for gift cards, such as buy four $25 gift cards and get a $25 gift card free. This brings in cash today.
  8. Develop marketing plans for those industries that will thrive in this environment, including:
    • Any revenue model with minimal social interaction
    • Food, household staples, medial delivery
    • Private transportation: ground and air
    • Online retailers
    • Home delivery
    • Online entertainment
    • “Cures” (valid as well as fake)
    • Warm weather open venues
    • Urgent Care
    • Zoom/Go-to-Meeting/Web-ex, etc.
  9. Call your insurance provider and see if you have business interruption insurance that covers this type of event. If it does, file a claim. If it does not, contact your state and federal legislator to let them know of your impact. Encourage others in your industry to do the same. The squeaky wheel more often gets the grease.
  10. Communicate with your team. When the recovery comes you want all you’re “A” players still on your team.
  11. Remember there are two disrupters happening simultaneously. COVID19 is one and is foremost on people’s minds.  The second is the Saudi/ Russia oil dispute. The latter will likely have longer term consequences. If your cost structure benefits or is hurt by oil, forecast the potential impacts.
  12. Get creative and innovate. In times of slow economic demand, use this time to make your company better in the long run. Improve your processes, increase efficiency, evaluate suppliers and technology to lower cost, build remote working strategies and rhythms, engage in team training which pays off in the long term, learn to use your existing technology better.
  13. Rally your team and hold ideation sessions. People love helping, so give them an opportunity. You might be surprised at what they come up with.
  14. Stay out of fear. No one makes good decisions in fear. Use your inner guidance to stay grounded with meditation, time in nature, yoga, connection (virtual) with others, whatever supports you.
  15. Remember, there is good news out there. Cases in China are already diminishing.  In fact, the government is telling companies reopen in areas where few new cases are cropping up.  This leads them to believe the virus life-cycle is relatively of short duration.

Fun fact: In the 2008 recession none of the MACKEY™ Prosper for business clients went out of business.