2020 has been a thoroughly unexpected and turbulent year for most business owners. We’re here to share our business forecast, projected by our very own Eastbourne Business Coach, Tim Rylatt.
Many have seen troubling times, and a lucky few have experienced unrivaled growth opportunities.
As the dust settles and a ‘coping mechanism’ is established by both the government and the business community, what do the next 12 months look like for most SME owners?
An Eastbourne business coach shares his best forecast
There has been a lot of change in a short space of time, and whilst some businesses have already succumbed to the pressure, many more are still struggling.
In the immediate future, the end of the government’s furlough scheme will have an impact as companies returning to a full wage bill have to manage those increased overheads or have to make redundancies.
Where the latter occurs, this means lower potential output for some businesses, and also in most cases a greater sharing of the same workload amongst fewer people.
This is not great from the perspective of stress, and maintaining an ability to work on as well as in the business for business owners.
When company owners are forced to pick up too many of the operational duties, they invest less time on improvement strategies and are prone to stagnate.
Where large scale unemployment is involved, as is now starting to happen, the recruitment market becomes in some ways simpler and in other ways more difficult.
There is more talent in the pool, but also much more sifting and selection pressure, as well as less likelihood of optimum salaries being negotiated by employees. Good for business owners, not so good for candidates.
The economy is technically now in recession. This is neither a surprise, nor as much of a fear factor as the media would present.
The country was locked down and ‘artificially stifled’ for a while, but there is still a good opportunity for most companies outside of hospitality and retail sectors… although a bit like the rainforest, the loss of one creature has a knock on effect in the food chain.
The key element to remember is that the best businesses are quick to adapt, and seek out opportunities to match their resources and skillsets. If you act like a dinosaur, you need to be sure you have the financial resilience for the long game.
If you need to make changes, make them. It will be the ‘stubborn mules’ that fail to adapt or lack a willingness and acceptance of the need for change that are most likely to suffer.
From a coaching perspective, it’s likely that your current business plan is outdated or no longer appropriate. Be proactive and work out a new way to tack into the fresh wind that has arrived in your ocean setting.
Top Tips for Making Change Work
Do your research
Discuss the new environment with your customers and colleagues and review what other pioneers in your industry are doing now.
Match the current setting
Look at the NEW needs, both short and longer-term, and assess the continuing viability of existing services and products.
Identify those that need to be:
- Continued but adapted
- Continued unchanged
- Require different messaging
- Need introduction and promotion
Improve your working methods
Look at the NEW needs of your team. This is obviously your employees, but also now extends to how you work with suppliers and partners.
Look at how your customer interactions NOW need to be managed. Where you are making changes, be sure to communicate in advance the what and the why, so that any potential fears or expectations are addressed positively.
Modernise your marketing and communication
Make sure that you are findable and interactive online now more than ever. The majority of face to face communication has become constrained… So get ahead of the curve and modernise your communication strategies.
Plan the numbers ahead
As a final point in this brief advice section… As with everything to do with business, make sure you know your current numbers and have confidence in a realistic and highly considered financial forecast.
This is particularly important if you have accessed credit or lending to adapt and survive. Things such as the CBILS loans need repayment, and not in a distant future. Map out your income, expenses, and repayments and plan the cash flow ahead in detail.
Get some extra support and expert guidance
If you need further advice or help with your business, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org or book a free 90-minute business strategy by calling me on 07735 414185
If you’d like a FREE copy of my latest ebook called ‘Tips to grow your business – the 9 profit levers’ you can download it here.
Tim Rylatt (the author of this blog) is a multi-award winning business coach and a published author. He is the managing director of UK Growth Coach, and also a director in two local marketing agencies. Tim can help you with any of the following:
- Business Coaching Programme
- Sales Training
- Marketing Consultancy
- Executive Coaching Programme
Areas you will need a different coach for:
- Life coaching
- Career coach