How Small Businesses Can Show Resilience in the Face of Economic Downturns

How Small Businesses Can Show Resilience in the Face of Economic Downturns
The Siliconreview
30 June, 2020

The most recent economic slump that has plagued the world will most definitely be affecting us for months, maybe more – it’s best to be prepared for all possibilities and have our mental spaces ready for this likelihood.

Small to medium sized business owners will likely be one of the biggest groups of people affected negatively by the coronavirus outbreak. Restrictions on being outdoors, mass gatherings, tourism, and all forms of social get-togethers have impacted the retail, restaurant, travel and automotive industries, among many others.

These times of forced isolation and country-wide lockdowns could really make one reflect on how to build resilience and flexibility in times of setbacks and world-wide pandemics. It compels us to think about how to build better, more sustainable lifestyles, in order to rise above such challenges – or even contribute to help the world avoid repeating our mistakes.

Small business owners can:

  1. Select an industry that is immune to current trends or popularity.

Though it may be tempting to start a business selling what is currently popular, most of the time, these trends are non-essential in times of crisis. If you do decide to sell items that are a current fad, it is a good idea to incorporate timeless offerings into your product mix; products that are classically attractive and/or always useful. Incorporating these types of products could be the one thing that will save your business in the face of a national or world crisis.

  1. Think efficiency; especially in terms of your operational costs.

Do you really need a large number of employees in order to keep your efficiency – or can some tasks be automated? Is a retail space necessary, or can you thrive with an e-commerce channel alone? Are you located optimally – is your current place of work the best office space you can find – offering you a good location, reasonable rental rates, and other amenities you need? The point is to keep your fixed and operational costs at a minimum. Apart from resulting in a bigger bottom line, you won’t have to worry as much about monthly upkeep and expenditure, as well as your liability to these aspects when a depression does strike.

  1. Moving forward, employ more sustainable practices.

The recent covid-19 pandemic could have been prevented on a global scale if nations or leaders took more responsibility, yes, but on an individual scale, preventive practices could have protected us from the virus, or at least granted us more immunity. Always practice good hygiene, employ and support sustainable and green alternatives in your lifestyle as a whole, and take care of your health.

We may not be seeing the end of this crisis anytime soon, but taking stock of what we can learn from it can definitely improve our mental state as we endure these economically and emotionally trying times. Thinking constructively about what we can do better next time will definitely employ a collective transformation, if all small and medium enterprise owners can take this to heart and live it out as best they can.