How to Be a Fierce Entrepreneur in a Time of Crisis

Entrepreneurs are the captains of their ship and steer it through every storm with their acumen and ability. While some waves are easy to sail thro...

  • How to Be a Fierce Entrepreneur in a Time of Crisis
    Lethabo Moodley Image Lethabo Moodley

    How to Be a Fierce Entrepreneur in a Time of Crisis

    • Updated: Monday 4th of January 2021
    • Strategy

    Entrepreneurs are the captains of their ship and steer it through every storm with their acumen and ability. While some waves are easy to sail through, others can prove catastrophic. The prevailing economic conditions emerging due to the COVID-19 pandemic are no less than a dreadful vortex looking into the eyes of the sailor. However, entrepreneurs cannot abandon the ship. They have to move forward with whatever limited resources they have and make the most of every opportunity.

    A business owner has to show toughness and perseverance during the crisis and emerge stronger to survive and support others. Thus, if you have been planning to purchase a business for sale in South Africa, then you must be ready to face every challenge thrown up at you during a testing phase. Here is some advice on how you can stay strong amidst a situation that threatens the sustainability of your venture.

    Look at Every Challenge as an Opportunity

    Always remember that the sky is the darkest just before the dawn. If the pandemic has created incomparable hurdles in your way, it must not bring you down. Keeping the company afloat may seem like an enormous task right now, but you can do it with your zeal and determination to carry on. Some of the best companies have seen the worst of times and have come out of it better equipped. Thus, you will have to adapt according to the circumstances and stay focussed on your goals.

    Cutting costs is the best way to deal with falling sales, so plan your business spending accordingly. Reduce expenses such as the office rent, utility payments, out of town meetings, business lunches, etc. by working remotely. It will also keep you safe during the pandemic and improve the productivity of the employees as they will be enjoying an ideal work-life balance. Thus, a positive attitude and the willingness to embrace new ideas can work wonders in securing your position in the industry.

    Adapt Quickly to Hold Fort

    It is essential for businesses to keep adopting the latest trends and technologies to stay ahead of the competition. An economic downturn or a similar challenge usually changes consumer behaviour and the needs of the buyers. Thus, entrepreneurs need to swiftly understand the shift in the market and in the desires of the target audience. They should be ready to make changes to their operations and processes to suit the changing needs of the industry. If they are unable to recognise the new opportunities, they may cease to exist.

    For instance, the pandemic has made several businesses to sell online and offer contactless deliveries. It has helped them to manage the cash flow and adopt the latest technology for revenue generation. You should be aware of the most pressing needs of the customers during the crisis and must try to fulfil it in the most appropriate way.

    Get Your Workforce Ready

    Finding the best people for your company is challenging. If you have a competent team working for you, then do not let them slip away. Train them in the organisational changes and upskill them to upgrade your operations. It will avoid the need to hire more people in a financially distressing period for the business. You can reduce the cost of training by making the staff opt for free online courses and certifications that are relevant to their job.

    The internet is full of educational videos and informative articles which can help in improving the knowledge of the workforce. You can also invite your acquaintances and industry veterans for online workshops, which can be arranged at a lower cost. You can even partner with other businesses to collaborate and learn from each other during a tough time and gain a powerful alliance.

    Take Advantage of Government Resources

    Any financial crisis which threatens the economy of the country is taken seriously by the government. The South African government too has sprung into action and started the debt relief finance scheme for small businesses suffering due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As an entrepreneur, you must be quick to leverage these resources to stay afloat and get the right guidance.

    Since SMEs are the backbone of the economy, the government makes sure they get all the support. The business owners must be aware of the funding sources available in the country, which can help in sustaining the growth of their business. They must rely on the advice of their accountants, bookkeepers and financial advisors to find the best opportunities and avoid missing out on any funding offers due to the lack of information.

    Utilise Technology

    The future lies in the digital medium, and entrepreneurs cannot survive if they continue to be present only in the physical medium. Becoming technologically advanced is the best way to stay ahead of the competitors and fulfil the needs of the customers in the best way possible. The digital space is changing fast, and there are innovations revolutionising the market every few years.

    An entrepreneur must be ready to accommodate these solutions in his business processes and offerings to match the latest trends. Taking the business online has specifically been beneficial for various brick-and-mortar stores during the pandemic as people are relying on online shopping to avoid the lethal virus. Contactless deliveries have helped various businesses to gain back some part of their original sales, and the trend will continue in the future.

    Retain Your Target Audience

    The customer is the king for a business, and you cannot afford to lose them during a difficult phase. They are the ones who can save you from having to pull down the shutters. Thus, maintain adequate communication with your loyal customers and engage with potential buyers so that you can have more sales. If the consumers are not buying due to an economic slowdown, you should not stop interacting with them. Talk to them through personalised emails, social media posts, company blog, articles, and other platforms to keep them informed.

    Let them know how you are tackling the situation and what changes have you incorporated in your organisation during the current circumstances. You must tell them about the safety precautions being utilised at the office and the new services, products and discounts being offered. It will reinstate their trust in your company and make them come back to you for their next purchase. Customer retention is cheaper than acquisition so entrepreneurs should not let them move to the competitors due to lack of clear communication.

    Conclusion

    The novel coronavirus took the world by surprise and brought it to a standstill. However, the resilience of mankind to survive any adversity prevailed, and we came back stronger and smarter. If you are planning to purchase a business for sale in South Africa, then you must show the same conviction and steadfastness during a crisis. The tips mentioned above will help you to stay focussed and become successful.

  • Author Info Lethabo Moodley

    A business expert, Lethabo Moodley is a management consultant who has been working across domains since 2005. His rich experience includes a Masters degree in business administration from the prestigious Gordon Institute of Business Science and Doctor of Business Leadership degree from Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership. He has been actively working as a consultant with the biggest firms in South Africa and his contribution in the growth of these organisations is considered invaluable. He has saved a lot of small businesses from going bankrupt and has renewed the lost success streak of the big fish in the market. Business2Sell is delighted to have him onboard for his insightful blogs.