It’s no secret that this past year has brought on dramatic change for many businesses of all sizes. From standard operating procedures to personnel needs, customer service to supply chain management, it’s safe to say that, moving forward, everything will be different. To make matters more challenging, many businesses have experienced significant loss, which they’ll need to recover from now that we’re allowed to fully re-open.
As we become accustomed to this “new normal,” budding entrepreneurs and current business owners will have to strategize a new game plan to make it in a post-COVID world. If you’re one of those business owners wondering how to keep your business profitable (or even start a new one) now that the world has reopened, we have a few tips for you.
If there was ever a time to take a good long look at your business to identify what’s working and what’s not working, it’s now. Once the pandemic hit, you likely had to adapt to new rules and regulations for remaining open — or you had to shut down completely. Either way, you need to be ready to adapt once again because the way we do business now has changed indefinitely.
You can start by reviewing your budget and expenses to see what will work best in terms of future growth and sustainability. It’s a good idea to implement a financial tool to help with your business auditing and budget monitor. Essentially, you can track revenue streams with powerful reporting software, like QuickBooks Online Advanced. This can automate your bookkeeping, allowing you to generate financial reports in real-time and recognize your main money-makers so you can make better budget decisions, continuously monitor your business’s financial health, and share reports with your accountant.
The only way to rebound from the financial losses you likely took during the pandemic is to really put your business back out there to attract more business. A few ways to do this could be expanding your curbside delivery services, offering a home delivery service, putting out new products — the list goes on.
Regardless of what you choose to do, you need to ensure you can create a steady projected income stream so that your business not only becomes sustainable but also predictable. In the meantime, there is government-backed support out there to help small businesses stay in business.
During the pandemic, many small business owners came together to support one another and provide their customer bases with products and services. It’s a good idea to partner with others as you launch and maintain those relationships so you have a stronger support system in the future. If you haven’t, it’s a good idea to start forming new partnerships and collaborations that will allow an opportunity for new revenue streams and then some. For example, a virtual assistant like Katherine Curry is a great person to partner with. Hiring her to handle your admin tasks allows you to spend more time building your business.
If we can draw any lessons from this past year it’s that you can never be too prepared. Most business owners, in general, were not prepared to sustain a company and employees for an entire year of uncertainty.
Of course, even in a post-pandemic world, we still have no way of knowing how the economy will fare down the road. That means you’ll need to create a plan that future-proofs your business, no matter what. This could look like going completely remote, creating multiple shorter shifts for part-time workers, focus on digital services, and, of course, padding your budget to prepare for another future shut-down.