30 Apr 8 things you can do right now to position your business for post-lockdown
For many people, any dramatic changes that need to be made to our businesses have been made. There’s possibly a period of calm, which feels a little strange as we’re in the midst of a pandemic that could change the way we work and live our lives for some time to come, if not forever. Once the business is in a position to ride out the lockdown, it’s worth starting to think about adapting to make sure you’re well-placed for post-lockdown. For this reason, now’s the perfect time to plan ahead for when businesses are able to open again and the economy heads towards some sort of normality. It’s an opportunity to take a step back and see if you’re on the best course for when things start to trade again.
Here are our the most important things to think about, right now:
Consider how the business will exit the lockdown. Those businesses that open from a standing start will be at a disadvantage so it’s worth scenario planning about how the business can start to scale to opening and which key activities will come first. Of course, there’s the fine balance of managing the costs associated with doing so with any potential revenue that could be made.
Think about what the market will be like when you reopen for business post-lockdown. Nobody expects demand to start where it left off so modelling should include different levels of expected demand for your different products in the new market conditions and how you could adapt costs to flex up or down. There could be the option to leave some employees furloughed for longer until demand returns.
Look at the market with a new lens and see what opportunities will be available. What will be your top performing products in the new world? A top performer in Q1 may not perform so well when we come out the other end. Are there new opportunities that you could consider? For services businesses, it could be about creating bitesize packages that clients can dip into for support rather than ongoing retainers that they’re not in a position to sign up for.
Understand the impact on price. With all the changes, it’s worth trying to understand the effect on demand for the products/services you offer as that will in turn have an effect on price. Will there be greater elasticity? Will there be supply issues? Are you still able to purchase all of the raw materials that you need?
It’s time to be innovative. There may well be new opportunities and if you’ve an innovation in the pipeline or have some ideas about future innovations, now may be the time to fast track them. Remember, innovations don’t have to be radical, they could be small tweaks that have a big impact.
Could there be a more cost-effective organisational structure. It’s worth thinking about the structures employees have been furloughed from. Are they fit for purpose? Was transformation too difficult in the past? There’s now an opportunity to make those more quite big changes you’ve ways thought about. Whether that be bringing services inhouse, outsourcing, centralising, or decentralising, automating, you can use the scale-up scenario to transition ready for start-up.
Review your supplier and customer base. There will undoubtedly be many business casualties so you may need to find alternative suppliers & customers post-lockdown. If there’s any doubt about their viability, now’s the time to find alternatives so you can get ahead of the curve.
Keep track of competitors. It’s always sad to see competitors cease trading as it highlights how tough the market really is. However, it also creates an opportunity for you – their customers, their talented employees and key personnel, their premises. What possibilities are there for you to incorporate the best bits of their business into yours? What can you learn from their experiences?
There’s so much to think about in these times of change – just focusing on a few of the key points above will mean you’re better placed to deal with the trials and tribulations of the next few weeks and months. If you need a sounding board or some support to think about the new opportunities that post-lockdown could provide, get in touch and let us help develop a strategy and plan for you.