This is the first in a series of 5 articles outlining the steps to consider when planning your business and life after the Coronavirus pandemic.
Phase 1, Lockdown.
There is no way to determine the duration of this 5-phase process, nor indeed the duration of any one phase. But just as the sun rises every day, the economic winter we’re currently experiencing will turn into spring. For that we must be ready, because with it will come opportunities that will pass us by if we don’t actively look for them and prepare to grasp them. There is a great deal of truth in the Military’s 6 P’s adage that “Poor Preparation and Planning leads to Pathetically Poor Performance”.
Before looking too far into the future we should check that we have done all we need to stabilize our current situation, both personal and business, during Phase 1 – Lockdown.
Have we done everything that we can to take care of our employees? Are those that must come in to work adequately spaced and protected and are those isolated and working (or furloughed) from home being given the support, direction and companionship they need to remain sane, motivated and productive.
Have we explored every element of our financial stability, both routine and exceptional? By routine, I mean debtors managed, creditors agreed, overdraft and loan facilities fixed and confirmed, cash-flow forecast completed as far forward as meaningful, dividends adjusted, margins considered and maximized.
By exceptional I mean Government support through the Business Rates grant scheme, Business Boost Facility, Furlough payments, VAT and Tax deferrals etc. What the Government is offering to assist in managing these extraordinary circumstances is itself extraordinary. We should make best use of them.
Although mentioned last, it is not the least important – your personal situation. Eating well, exercising frequently, sleeping properly and managing your time to incorporate time for reflection and planning are essential. We should remember that for the sick man, health is wealth, just as for the lonely man, love is wealth.