When the Titanic was sinking there were three different types of people: those who kept dancing, those who panicked without any considerable action, and those who jumped to safety boats. Now that the economies are sinking, what are the safety boats available?
1. Stop dancing and realize there’s a problem out there before it’s too late. This involves knowing what decisions to make and compromise on your initial lifestyle…Time to budget and watch out.
2. Stop panicking and start planning; whether locally or abroad, own business, freelancing or employment, everything needs a plan!
3. Stop criticizing others’ points of view or plans, each person has a different mindset and priorities which we should all respect. Give a valuable piece of advice or stay quiet.
4. If you are looking for a job:
- Don’t send CVs randomly. Choose the best possible companies you’d like to work for and make a plan on how you can add value to them. Companies can’t afford an extra employee but they can always invest in a star key person.
- Use LinkedIn smartly to search for the right connections. Don’t bombard them with messages, never play the victim, make sure to build long term relationships and to share interesting content to showcase your values and your expertise.
- Make sure not to ask for unrealistic salaries. Companies are struggling. So try to negotiate a combination between a fixed salary that is fair for both and an incentive upon productive growth.
5. If you are freelancing
- Consider bringing clients from all around the globe. Make sure you are available on freelancing platforms.
- Make sure to deliver your projects with high quality and on time.
- Get testimonials to improve your rating.
- Don’t make all your money from one account; otherwise get employed. In other words, price fairly and make sure you manage your time properly to handle several projects at a time. Check project management tools in this regard.
6. If you are considering your own business
- Learn how to draft your business plan, or seek professional advice. Just like you can’t build your dream house without a blueprint, you simply can’t expand a business without a business plan.
- Search for countries where your type of products and services are appreciated and study your market properly in order to find the gaps you could fill.
- Search for the right partners and alliances; if you need an investor, make sure he/she gives you added value besides the financial contribution. If you are looking for alliances, make sure you complement each other’s expertise and that you share some resources to reduce cost, such as office, staff, equipment, database, etc.
- Market your business properly; the world is open and you can’t expect that everyone knows who you are just because you have a Facebook page. You have at least 10 channels you can use with either zero cost or very light ones such as LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, email newsletters, blog articles, webinars, etc. You just need to have valuable content and a creative approach to reach out to your audience. Make sure you use a pull strategy instead of harassing people with traditional push techniques.
- Be the best possible sales person and make sure to build a sales team to have disciples in the market. Marketing tools are very important to generate leads but only good sales people, including yourself, have the ability to convert those leads to profitable deals.
- Make sure you have a good management reporting system, a solid ERP that could help you manage your business remotely and monitor live dashboards to spot mistakes and optimize your performance. If you like the pen and the paper, make sure to do data entry or delegate this task to someone else. But data needs to be analyzed…
- Assess and analyze on a regular basis. Team assessments, training needs, financial analysis, workflow, SWOT, competition, PEST, you name it…you can’t improve what you can’t measure. Always keep in mind that 50% of the solution is in knowing what the problem is. So you’d better analyze all data every single quarter and take corrective measures accordingly. Make sure to have a training culture of improvement by installing an internal training academy with a clean online library and continuous training for all team members.
Despite all the challenges, the safety boats are out there and most of them completely available either for free or at very affordable rates. It is up to you to benefit from them, upgrade your knowledge and seek expertise where needed. We are glad to support you in this regard.
Jade W. Dagher
Business & Wealth Strategist
Certified Management Consultant ©