Is it a slow painful death for our business or a prolonged one? Is our business on life support just hanging on or are we enjoying a bright future? Is that future now or post COVID-19? Cash flow is the undisputed blood flow of business.
Unfortunately, many of our businesses have suffered massive heart attacks over the last few months, others like Amazon.com and Tesla are pumping beyond their cardio capabilities, whilst many sit somewhere in between. Business blood flow can come to a screeching halt in the current environment.
“Conversely, we can also see peak business performance activity well above pre-pandemic levels,” said business strategist and coach Paul Roach. Business heart attack or not, Roach, who has written the book ‘Smarter Business Stronger Cashflow‘ explains how we can chart our course through this global business cycle.
Running a business is tough in normal conditions, ridiculously so in a pandemic. Slow down to speed up. Get your headspace in top condition, relaxed, calm, and clear focused. Take the time to get in this zone. If you are in your business, it is time to find a way to spend some time away from it. Freshen up. Exercise. Calm your nervous system. Get in the zone to think, not react. More important than ever – the game of business is won with what is above your shoulders not what is below. Stress can lead to heart attacks, both personally and in your business.
Two speed cash flow and everything in between
Measuring success by cash in the bank is a lagging indicator of previous business activity, it has never been an indicator of the future and never will be. Know where you are at and plan your cash flow to move forward. Cash flow is the number one criterion that governs all that you can and cannot do in determining future opportunities for growth. In this two-speed economy it is about how you get into the fast lane to maximise upside. Whilst most will be looking at their feet, opportunity comes knocking for those that can see it and execute.
Being “regionally isolated and virtually connected” creates estrangement that consumers are looking to supplement in some form. Some parts of the economy remain strong where perhaps we may have thought they would dip. Our change in sentiment and an economy heavily supported by assistance has altered our trajectory living with Covid-19.
When and where is your opportunity
Every downturn creates opportunity for market share, 100% of zero is still zero. Survival of the fittest often comes down to who has the strongest cash flow. Our global predicament has forced innovation in handling of the health crisis and its associated complications. We have also seen significant regional innovation to handle changes in demand and gaps from the global economy. There will continue to be significant innovation moving forward to cope with the changed circumstances we now live with. Zig when others zag.
In addition, this crisis has created demand to be filled in its own right. A bit like going to war where many see the battle and the casualties. Others see the opportunity to supply uniforms, protective gear, ammunitions, ration packs, medical equipment, and the like. Then there is the indirect supply of supporting services around this. Where is your business opportunity to harness?
Many businesses are running out of, or have run out of, cash. Business cycles are catastrophic in part however consistent or stronger than expectations. Significant changes in employment, retail sales and manufacturing sectors have changed the fundamentals of our economy and our place in it. Keeping households afloat has been a major priority along with the businesses that support them. Helping people stay in jobs, keeping us business ready to move forward, and creating a new normal as quickly as possible. Where does your business now sit and in the future?
Where and what does the future look like?
People are wanting to enjoy themselves before the end of the world! It is scary for some and downright frightening for others. Our economy will continue to zig zag, one step forward and two backwards on occasion. Whilst it may sound contradictory, planning in a turbulent time is extremely important. It is highly probable that your plan will change, zig zagging is part of the new norm. Governments are responding differently at a global level. What is the impact for your business? How is this impacting supply chain and what are the costs? What do we gain by staying where we are? What are the risks of moving? Does our business heart need some medication, a stent, a bypass, or a transplant? Worse, is our business dead? Knowing our current and future cash flow will determine this.