Managing Through Uncertainty
These are unsettling and unprecedented times. How should CEOs and business owners navigate through unchartered waters? Going back to the basics is a good place to start:
1. Review your strategic plan. Strategy remains important now more than ever. Be clear and precise in your strategy statement and value proposition to both employees and customers. What are the specific steps needed to successfully execute your strategy? Do you need to re-align resources or modify timeframes? Identify dependencies and constraints that may impact achieving your company goals.
2. Review your budget. How are your year-to-date actuals tracking to the budget forecast? Is your reporting dashboard trending up or down? Remember, the budget is not set in stone, so adjust and re-forecast if actuals and projections are dramatically misaligned. Having solid financial reports will help you make better business decisions and course correct.
3. Get your operations organized. Documentation, documentation, documentation. These include: key workflows, process maps, policies and procedures, training and on-boarding documents, internal and external FAQs. Have each department document in detail key deliverables, roles and responsibilities, project plans and back-up resources.
4. Invest in your most valuable asset - your people. Provide your employees the necessary training, tools, resources and framework to perform and excel. Even in less than optimal work conditions, maintaining regular check-ins and providing a feedback loop with action items will keep your team motivated, connected and on-track to meet your company's goals.
5. Establish business continuity and disaster recovery plans. Be prepared for handling the next unknown crisis. Identify the business risks; perform a business impact analysis; develop back-up data, security and IT protocols; develop testing and maintenance requirements.
6. Pay Attention, State Your Intention and Take Action. This is an important time to pivot from anxiety to opportunity. Pay attention to reality by listening to your team and customers. State your intention and goals with clarity and focus. Clearly communicate to all internal and external stakeholders. Take action with measurable steps and hold yourself accountable first and foremost.
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