Advice:Prepare for the upturn

By , published on 18th March 2011

Recession, tightening of money supply, nervousness in investor confidence, decline in customer demand, inflation, shortages of key commodities, adverse currency movements, economic and political uncertainty – they all come and go.

Fortune often goes to the bold in such circumstances – but most often to the well prepared.

However, the greatest challenge for a well ordered business can often be none of the above features of a downturn, but the problems of surviving an upturn. Strange? – But true. This is because many businesses inevitably enter this more positive phase of any economic cycle with weak balance sheets, demoralised staff and a lack of previous investment.

So even in a downturn:

  • Don’t lose faith – and don’t panic! Be clear about your business goals and values, keep your business model under constant review by all means, stay agile and keep all your relationships at work and home in good order.
  • Keep with those who also share your faith – investors, suppliers and above all customers and staff, and share any short-term pain equitably.
  • Look for new opportunities. These could be in any form, from companies to acquire who were less well prepared than you; new technologies with promise that struggled to find a market in the downturn; new members of staff who were made redundant from other companies with skills you may greatly value; renewed business relationships cemented from past shared support in harder times; and inevitably new markets that you may have been forced to explore in the downturn.

Behind every cloud there is a silver lining.

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Janette Whitney

About Janette Whitney

Janette Whitney is an award-winning business consultant, media columnist and award-winning business author. She specialises in business growth strategies and finance and formed her consultancy business after a highly successful career in banking. Janette’s expertise has won her both national and regional awards which include ‘Consultant of the year’ and ‘Business Book of the Year’ award (as co-author of ‘The Essential Business Guide’).

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