Let’s face it – the occasional setback can happen in any business.
You lose an account when a client decides to go in a different direction. The economy nosedives and impacts your profitability. A key employee suffers a major health issue and no one is cross-trained to take over. A key employee leaves your company and joins up with a competitor.
Any of these situations are cause for concern and may pose serious challenges for your company.
Dwelling on the negatives, however, won’t do any good for your company or your staff. Setbacks are the time for decisive action.
Here are three things that you can do to move forward when there is a setback:
A business setback is no time to “hide your head in the sand” and pretend that it never happened. It’s normal to feel apprehensive, disappointed, and perhaps even a bit angry, but letting these emotions stand in the way of a rational thought process that can lead to definitive action will only turn a bad situation worse.
Acknowledge and respect your feelings, and do not waste time pointing fingers or looking for someone to blame. Instead, assess the situation in its entirety so that you can set a realistic and well thought out action plan to move you past the problem. In some cases, it might benefit the business to bring in key employees to help create the plan; they are your front line.
Dealing with a setback is no time to go it alone. When emotions are running high there is a greater chance that irrational, less-than-optimal solutions will be considered. Your Trusted Advisors can help you to assess the situation with more clarity and focus on the very best short- and long-term solutions for your company.
Once the situation has been analyzed and a solution developed, it is time to take action. Move decisively, review the progress and results along the way, and be prepared to re-engineer the action plan if new or additional challenges arise. Remember that your employees are feeling the effects of the situation just like you; they may be nervous and fearful about what could happen to the company and their position. Make certain to keep them informed about the steps that you are taking to rectify the situation and offer reassurances about their place in the company. Remaining silent and unresponsive to your staff will add to their discomfort, increase the tension in the workplace, and potentially undermine the quality of work being delivered to your clients.
Perhaps the most important thing for you to do is learn from the experience so that there is no “next time.” What precautions and plans can you now establish to ensure that the upheaval that took place will never reoccur?
Every Business Owner knows the cliché live to fight another day. You encounter challenges every day and there’s no question that some setbacks can impact your business more than others. The good news is that most setbacks are temporary and if handled effectively can set you up to be even stronger in the future.
Remember the fall and rise of Tylenol: