The Paycheck Protection Program enabled many businesses to defer making workforce reductions or other drastic spending cuts for a few weeks. This gave leaders time to respond to the impact of the pandemic on their business, whether that meant shifting employees to work from home, expanding online sales or pivoting their service offering.
Those early recipients of PPP funds are now nearing the end of the eight-week payroll support and are beginning to reevaluate their path forward when those funds are depleted.
As executives now look to make decisions to drive their long-term success, we see four areas where leaders should focus as they formulate their plans. These areas are:
Here are a few specific considerations for each.
During early scenario planning in response to COVID-19, one CEO I spoke with offered this obvious, but true perspective “the surest way for a business to cease to exist is to run out of money.” No matter how creative you are in pivoting your business to respond to this crisis, it ultimately comes back to finance fundamentals, so we suggest that you:
Unless you are one of those fortunate businesses that’s in higher demand (videoconferencing technology, PPE manufacturers, home office furniture, and yes, toilet paper) odds are you’re having to adapt your business in some way to generate sales. Those early shifts may have been hastily implemented – implementing a bare-bones e-commerce platform or redeploying teams on short-term projects, for example.
One lesson from this pandemic is the benefit of flexibility and that’s especially applicable to business models and go-to-market strategy. Take a moment to reflect on the following:
Many businesses saw a quick decline in sales opportunities or experienced delays in getting new contracts signed. Some companies cut marketing to conserve cash and in response to the elimination of large events and in-person business development.
Do you have the right people in the right seats for the business needs you have today and are likely to have in the future?
Go back to your scenario planning for the balance of 2020 and apply these considerations, incorporating your recent experience as well as your best assumptions on how your industry and market will continue to be affected. If you have questions or want to discuss, sign-up here for a complementary strategy consult with one of our partners.
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“The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual.” Vince Lombardi
“You don’t have to hold a position in order to be a leader.” Henry Ford
“What you do has far greater impact than what you say.” Steven Covey
“It’s fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.” Bill Gates
“Outstanding leaders go out of the way to boost self-esteem of their personnel. If people believe in themselves, it’s amazing what they can accomplish.” Sam Walton
“Leadership is a matter of having people look at you and gain confidence, seeing how you react. If you’re in control, they’re in control.” Tom Landry
“Never make decisions based on money alone.” Cindy Anderson