Managing in this Crisis
We interrupt our normal coffees
for this important message on
In today’s Coffee…
What To Do When It's Not Business as usual
280 words, total reading time about 2 minutes
COVID-19 Biggest Threats To Your Business
While it appears our business designation (network and security provider) allows work to continue, there will be some interruptions to our 'business as usual' routines. Of course, everyone’s first concern is the safety of our employees, clients and families. We are pre-empting our usual coffees to provide this oped on the threats and provide a simple checklist. And, follow-up coffees will attempt to assist companies to cope with the crisis.
Here are some threats you might expect:
No access to job sites
Slowdown of permits and inspections
Collections become harder
Key employees may self quarantine
Cash dries up
Production but no linger term runway (new projects)
Vendors get strung out
Temporary or permanent layoffs
Stock market interruption reduces buying power/confidence (beyond actual crisis)
Clients downsize and want to cancel
In a three or four part series, we will examine options for CI owners during this unprecedented time. Our first is a simple checklist with actions to consider: CRISIS PLANNING CHECKLIST
I. Tighten purchasing; buy only essentials for projects that can be delivered.; LIMIT spending on almost everything unless it is critical to revenue delivery.
II. Verify which vendors are classed essential and shipping.
III. AR RFP and Collection Diligence; you have to stay on top of this particularly at this time.
IV. Send techs home if no work; encourage them to take vacation time now; no immediate cash savings but down the road this helps.
V.Freeze overtime; look for ways to get it done without it.
VI. Stay close to trade partners; communicate frequently; find what is happening with their pipeline.
VII.Keep cash in the business; you may be called upon to put more cash in for the short term.
VIII. Extend terms with vendors; communicate with vendors you don’t want to get on credit hold; but some will work with you.
IX.Consider using showroom inventory for delivery.
X.Freeze hiring; a given; it will be tough to retain your full staff through this.
XI. Become hyper familiar with the near-term production workload. Projects by projects detail is important.
XII. Have a policy on PTO, voluntary and involuntary; take attendance, know where you stand.
XIII. It is true that you cannot over-communicate in this environment; be proactive.
XIV. Reach out to clients to help with their networks, security or other concerns they might have; avoid being the ambulance chaser. Let them know of precautions you are taking; work from home, sanitization, masks, gloves, etc.
It is important to have a rapid response team assembled in your company even if it's only 3 or 4 people. Meeting weekly and communicating daily, they can avert issues spiraling out of control. Stay calm, remain confident and be of solid mind.