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Last week, J.L. Nick & Associates introduced a series of informational briefs addressing the challenges of re-starting the economy in our regions. In the first of the series, we look at how to navigate through a new and uncertain business environment.

State and local officials are preparing for a gradual resumption of economic activities. We are in unprecedented times, and there is no playbook or best practice on how to accomplish this. For those businesses that were deemed essential, you have had to innovate and adopt safety measures without pause throughout the pandemic. For those who ceased or greatly curtailed operations, you have an opportunity to re-evaluate every facet of your business, perhaps even focusing on aspects that otherwise receive only cursory attention. This is a great time to get back to basics, to position your business to be stronger than ever in a changing environment.

Businesses of all sizes rely on foresight and experience when weighing playing it safe against taking risks to forge a path to success. Now, the new environment is unknowable – the paradigm has shifted to something we have yet to experience – success will be defined differently, as will the path to achieving it. In this circumstance, it’s imperative that leaders exhibit courage and clam while keeping uncertainty and fear of the unknown at bay.

For a prepared leader, this complex array of uncertainty and ambiguity creates opportunities for you to assess, learn, reinvent, and evolve your business to a new level. There are several steps leaders can take to identify their business’ strengths and weaknesses in an effort to face this uncertainty with courage and intimate knowledge of what their own organization can become.

  • Evaluate the new VIRTUAL marketplace and how your business can adapt to an online environment. For some, this may not be possible because of your business model.  While for others, it is an opportunity to Identify what your organization can leverage to its advantage and to be aware of areas where it may be at a disadvantage. Consider whether your business can evolve in these areas to better adapt to a virtual or blended environment.  Is there an opportunity to increase a revenue stream as a result of a virtual or blended environment?
  • Construct a cost/benefit analysis for your new business model. Also, consider and evaluate new partnership opportunities evolving from a fresh strategy and approach.  This may be the perfect time to consider a strategic partnership. Is this something you considered?  Why?
  • Compare other markets for new or expanded revenue opportunities. An evolved business model will likely yield expected and unexpected new revenue streams. Be ready for the unanticipated. Keep an open mind and embrace unique ideas and approaches as the future unfolds.
  • Prepare a LONG-TERM business interruption strategy and evaluate your business to determine its sustainability in such a model. It may sound obvious at this point, but if the business community has learned anything since March, it is to be prepared for the worst. What possibly could be worse than what we just went through?  Many have adapted on the fly, but planning now for a similar eventuality in the future affords your business greater flexibility and surety during an extended crisis.  You have to have a plan, and the planning process is critical.  It is a rare occasion when plans go exactly as conceived, so you must have the ability to adapt. With that said, remember: A well-thought-out plan is the best platform for change.

Finally, in J. L. Nick, you have a reliable and responsible Business and Human Resources partner skilled in Functional Analysis and Organizational redesign.  We have the objectivity, experience, and expertise to help you re-evaluate your business model and help you take on an uncertain future. Learn more about us by visiting our website.

Wishing you good health and success,

John L. Nick, President, and Founder
J. L. Nick & Associates, Inc.

814-449-8446  John L. Nick
814-449-8445  Scott L. Nick
724-674-0302  Mark E. Novad

Contact J.L. Nick & Associates for all your Human Resource Consulting Needs