Facing hurdles when beginning a new venture are part and parcel of any business but in these unprecedented times small businesses and startups have been hit the hardest. As we look forward to new futures, we’re thinking of new strategies to navigate new realities and find business success in times of hardship.
Advice from Experienced Business Leaders
We talked with Millenial financial business coach Amanda Abella, and Tanya Reid from Focal Point Coaching, both trusted business experts in the Coral Gables community, to share some recommended strategies for entrepreneurs to implement during COVID-19.
Entrepreneurs should embrace the shift to the digital world. While internet-based technologies have long been a necessary tool for business, they have become vital for operations since COVID-19. Millennial Finance coach Amanda Abella advises entrepreneurs to utilize opportunities with online content, to engage their target customer.
“Focus on creating digital content to post on your website and social media.” she says. Shareable articles and videos can advertise your business and attract more leads.
Amanda also recommends giving out discounts and free product offers on social media to build out your email list. She explains, “The idea would be to use social media to collect leads. The way to collect the information on leads is to have a free offering where they can exchange information for a product or prize. This is a simple yet effective way to translate social media to email lists that you can market to after.”
While you consider creating content for social media, also take advantage of increased remote working by implementing online tools to make processes easier or allow remote teams to communicate easier. Tools like Mailchimp, Slack, and Zoom are all offering temporary rate cuts and now is the prime time to experiment with new platforms while saving costs.
Watch your cash flow! Reviewing finances, budgeting and keeping cash flow in check is important. Now more than ever, entrepreneurs should take a closer look at business expenses. Don’t be scared to make cuts to the overall budget. Manage monthly payment outflows, review what’s working and not working and decide what is worth keeping.
According to Amanda, “Be ruthless about cutting unnecessary expenses if you have to. Get lean and look to the future. Entrepreneurs should prepare financially for the next crisis as well.”
Cutting expenses can be difficult now, but can be necessary for the expansion of your business in the long term.
Tanya Reid from Focal Point Coaching, who has experience as a former Chief Financial Officer, recommends keeping track of funds for the future, through spreadsheets. “It’s all about having a good handle on cash flow. I’ve been recommending business owners keep a simple spreadsheet to forecast cash flow. Using the spreadsheet, review critical costs. Be willing to cut expenses and keep only the critical ones.” Tanya says.
Staying on top of your financial goals and revising your budget will help your business navigate through any financial issues and stay strong through hard times.
Become a problem solver! The best entrepreneurs are those who see opportunities when everyone else sees problems. Find an opportunity to convert your business into a service that can solve issues brought on by COVID-19 or make that pivot you were already thinking of making.
The world has now changed dramatically, and services that were once needed, are now not. Tanya Reid explains, “Is there an opportunity for your service to help solve problems from the COVID crisis that you are uniquely positioned to provide? Ask yourself what services do you provide that are relevant right now? It doesn’t have to be obvious but find your niche. Find ways to pivot to a different side of your industry, maybe even temporarily, and still generate revenue for your company.”
In times of crisis, take a moment to look for problems in your industry that your product, service or technology can help solve. If you think there are opportunities elsewhere, go beyond your industry and collaborate with other businesses if your service can be of value elsewhere. Providing assistance in different industries now, can lead to potential opportunities after the pandemic. Be open to new business models, pivot in the direction where your product is necessary and stay flexible. The most resourceful entrepreneurs are the ones who can see through the challenges.
Connect with Experts in the Industry
Consulting a business coach or leading expert in the field is a great resource for businesses navigating a crisis or just tackling everyday challenges. In our community, we have connections to many experts in the field, including Tanya and Amanda, who we spoke to in April as the COVID-19 crisis unfolded.
Amanda Abella has years of experience as a professional business coach, author, and podcast host. Amanda coaches entrepreneurs to help them increase sales, financially plan, and find brand clarity. Connect with Amanda through email: [email protected] or by phone: 305-504-6533 ext. 101
Tanya Reid is a business coach for Focal Point Coaching and comes with over five years of experience as the CFO of the Miami Children’s Museum. Tanya coaches business owners through financial management and helps them organize their business’s financial structure.
Connect with Tanya through email: [email protected] or by phone: 301-518-1916
Memberships at FORUM also come with dedicated time to meet with our Program Director, an in-house business guide who can support you as you navigate the day-to-day; from finding a bookkeeper to planning for new staff. Learn more about our services here .
Stay Well Informed
In these times, it is extremely important that businesses stay informed. Check your news outlets for the latest information and updates on COVID-19. In the Coral Gables community, you read the latest information issued by the city of Coral Gables, here. FORUM official statement on COVID-19.
Your Workspace In Downtown Coral Gables
FORUM is a coworking space in Downtown Coral Gables that offers various membership levels created to suit the needs of entrepreneurs, freelancers, startups and enterprise businesses. From hot desks to private suites, business support and more, FORUM is focused on community, connection and support. Contact us today to learn more [email protected] | 786-522-4466.