With the government-mandated shutdown underway, the reality of business has changed overnight. So, it’s crucial to do everything possible to reduce or control costs and keep your cash where it will benefit you most – in the bank.
Here are six things you can do to reduce costs.
1. It Takes a Village
The situation we find ourselves in is unprecedented. You’ve done nothing wrong and deserve every piece of help and support that you receive. Don’t misinterpret people’s offers of support as charity or pity; it’s empathy for a hard-working, dedicated business owner, cursed with bad timing. Let your village look after you in your time of need, and remember that generosity when the situation is reversed.
2. Be Honest with Your Staff
This is an incredibly sensitive subject, but sometimes it’s better to be completely upfront with people rather than leaving them to speculate. If you still have staff on the books, consider giving them an honest explanation of the finances and perhaps offer them some options – unpaid for a period of time, a reduction in salary, or benefits once the virus has been beaten.
3. Keep an Eye on Your Bank Statement and Cancel Everything
Watch those monthly and weekly outgoings for things that you aren’t using at the moment. Subscriptions, apps, industry publications – you can always start them again when this is all over.
4. Watch Direct Debits and Automatic Payments
It’s far easier to cancel a payment than to get the money back later. With many administrative and accounting staff on leave, especially in smaller businesses, if the money goes out of your account, it’s not likely to be returned immediately. Make a list of payments, send an email explanation and cancel the arrangement where appropriate.
5.Delay, Delay, Delay
Our entire industry is currently experiencing unprecedented hardship, and everyone is acutely aware of the pressure put on small business. When speaking with suppliers, don’t be afraid to ask for extensions on payments and to be honest about your situation.
6. Talk to Your Bank
If you have a loan or credit card, contact your bank or financial institution and explain you are experiencing hardship due to the coronavirus. For the most part, these businesses have responded well during the crisis and are likely to understand if you need to delay repayments. Also, remember to talk to them about options regarding your mortgage.
We will all be back, look after yourself and your family.