Business survival is essential. Hazards and obstacles are omnipresent. It’s no secret that 9 out of 10 new companies fail. The key to getting through those first few months when the waters are particularly choppy is adopting necessary survival skills. You may not make the list of most inspiring and innovative new business ventures of the year, but staying afloat is an achievement in itself. If you’re trying to beat the odds and make a new company successful, here are some strategies you can employ to try and make your business bulletproof.
MAKE WATERTIGHT FINANCIAL PLANS
Cash flow issues are among the most common causes of failure among new businesses. Whatever kind of company you own, it’s imperative to have watertight plans in place to make sure you can finance the launch and keep your business afloat in the months to come. Make budgets and use accurate figures. Don’t try and manipulate the numbers to make yourself feel better about how much it’s going to cost to get it off the ground. It’s better to overestimate costs than to underestimate them, as this will reduce the risk of overspending or running out of money. Make sure you understand how much you’re spending each month and keep an eye on your running and production costs and your margins.
If you’re not familiar with figures and you’re having difficulty putting a business plan together, it’s worth seeing a financial adviser. If your accounts have been 'up the spout' from day one, it’s going to be very tough to get back on track.
PREPARE FOR THE WORST
It sounds pessimistic, but in business, it’s essential to be aware of what could go wrong and to prepare for the worst. If you have backup plans in place, you’ll be ready to act as soon as you sense that there’s the potential for disaster. Consider your computer network, for example. Would you be able to get the system up and running again quickly if there was a cyber attack or the server dropped? With IT support, you can minimise the risk of long-term disruption and reduce the cost of downtime. Think about if your company could cope if freak weather conditions forecasted or several members of staff called in sick? If you have a plan B in place, you can call on these contingency procedures and decrease the risk of losing money and custom.
PROTECT YOUR ASSETS
Whether you own equipment, property or technology, it’s essential to take steps to protect your business. You may not be able to stop a flood, but if you’ve got insurance, this will enable you to replace damaged items without incurring unexpected costs.
Surviving in business can be challenging. You may feel like you’re fighting a rising tide from the outset, but being prepared can make all the difference. Plan ahead, manage your finances carefully and make sure you have a solution for issues that could crop up and potentially put you out of business. Invest in protection and try and live by the mantra that prevention is better than cure. Collaboration.