By Jason Thompson, CPA/ABV, ASA, CFE, CFF
Partner and Director of Valuation and Litigation Services
Who knows what is next in this pandemic? Initially what started as a national emergency with a 15-day stay-at-home order has now dragged on for weeks with more restrictions and concerns as time has passed. Easter came and went in untraditional fashion. Memorial Day, the official start of summer, is here, yet most of us will again celebrate this holiday differently than we have in the past.
So much of what’s happening is out of our hands. That’s why, as a business owner and leader of your organization, it’s important to recognize what you CAN control.
First, you can control your attitude. As your business’s leader, others are going to be watching how you handle things. Confidence that your business will make it through this is what many of your employees need to see. Demonstrate your confidence in them to ensure there will be a pathway through this.
Communication is critical. Communication is always an important task when managing a business. In today’s environment, with remote work and socially distancing in an office, contact with others has declined. A lack of contact promotes anxiety on top of heightened levels of anxiety we are all feeling from the pandemic. Communicating regularly with your employees about both important business issues and decisions as well as day-to-day experiences is now more important. Develop your process for this communication, make it happen and be consistent.
Make a plan. That is always easier said than done, but spending time to focus on what you do know and the potential alternatives you see for your business in this environment will prepare you for the road ahead. Is it time to go back to work? Does the current environment require a new business model? Are there other businesses we can work/partner with? The planning process in many instances prepares you for the uncertainty you will face, as you will have thought through potential alternatives and can thus adapt as the uncertainties unfold.
Uncertainty is definitely upon us and yet uncertainty has always been around, just maybe not in our face as much as it is today. In many ways, uncertainty is just a form of change and where there is change there usually is an opportunity to make things better. Evolution is the key to survival!