By Lindsey Anderson, CPA
Manager, Tax Services
August is usually a slower time for business, as parents shift their focus toward getting their kids ready for the return to school. While they shop for class supplies and recalibrate their personal schedules, you should also consider what your focus should be as a business owner. Now that we’re more than halfway through 2021, it’s time to take a step back and think about how you can successfully close out the year, given your current business conditions.
It’s always better to be proactive than reactive. Take this time to make contingency plans as you continue to navigate COVID and the ever-evolving economy around it. How will you deal with labor shortages and supply chain disruptions? Will you limit the products and services you offer? Where will you cut costs to handle higher inflation and wage rates? Is there elasticity in your marketplace to increase your prices?
Perhaps you need to work toward completely renovating your business model and give your enterprise a “refresh.” Given the unpredictable nature of the pandemic-stricken world right now, maybe you can’t sustain as a brick-and-mortar business and need to prepare for seeking more e-commerce business. With so many staff members in school mode, now might be the perfect time to explore the flexibility of your staff working remotely a day or two a week?
It’s important not just for business owners but for consumers to assess their financial standing right now too. How will inflation and higher tax rates affect your buy/sell decisions? Do you need to increase your savings rate to prepare for future uncertainties?
Although the midway point in the year is naturally a good time for evaluation, you should be assessing your business and financial status three to five times a year. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst, especially when it comes to running a business in a time of uncertainty. So step away from the daily grind and take some time to map out the future.
All business owners should take time periodically to work on their business rather than just in their business!