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How to manage difficult business conditions

How to manage difficult business conditions

There are key activities to focus on to help handle tough conditions.

In a market downturn, it’s important to focus on maintaining your sales, reducing your costs and preparing for the future. Here are some things to consider.

1. Prioritise customer service

Customers are more likely to support businesses they feel personally connected to, so make sure you’re giving good customer service where you can. Ask your customers about what they’d like to see more of in your business and you may discover new opportunities for growth.

2. Strengthen your network

If you’re struggling in a market downturn, there’s a chance other businesses in your network might be too. Reach out to similar businesses and look for ways to work together, such as offering referral programs or sharing marketing.

3. Upskill your employees

A market downturn can be an opportunity to upskill existing employees. Conduct a skills audit to consider the skills your business might be lacking and the employees who may be able to perform them. This can save you from having to employ someone new, can help employees feel engaged and remain loyal, and can help you when business recovers.

4. Look to the future

Spend some time updating your business plan, financial plan and business goals. Make sure you’re focusing your resources where they’re most effective. Set short-, mid- and long-term goals so you know what to focus on and what’s ahead. Use the experience to take stock of your current business, to build on what’s working and change what’s not.

5. Seek assistance

If you need to, ask for help. Talk to a business coach, seek out a mentor, or access financial counselling for another perspective that might help you get through a tough time.

Next up: Getting your business back on track

This article is intended to provide general information of an educational nature only. It does not have regard to the financial situation or needs of any reader and must not be relied upon as financial product advice. As this information has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs, you should, before acting on the information, consider its appropriateness to your circumstances. Taxation considerations are general and based on present taxation laws and may be subject to change. You should seek independent, professional tax advice before making any decision based on this information.