The outbreak of COVID-19 has disrupted the business landscape. However, it has not been without a silver lining.
The pandemic impacted businesses worldwide. The governments around the world tried to bifurcate businesses into ‘essentials’ and ‘non-essentials’, but businesses came up with ways to continue providing goods and services without endangering the life of people and their employees.
Here are a few ways global businesses tried to do so:
- Restaurants around the world shut down, but many chose to offer outside seating and curbside pick-up.
- Grocery stores and other retail businesses limited the number of customers inside the shop at one time.
- Best Buy set up a sales counter outside its front doors, making it easier for customers to pick their order online quickly.
The ingenuity of these businesses is commendable. But how did these companies came up with these ideas and that too so quickly?
Answer – they had a clear business strategy.
Many independent advisory firms can learn from this. It will also help advisory firms ready themselves to adapt and respond to current and future disruption.
Firms that have been able to thrive during this disruptive time are clear about their business strategy.
Let’s take a look at the business strategy of thriving businesses.
- Best buy sells electronics to people who can’t wait for Amazon deliveries. So Best buy moved their selling to curbside.
2. Local restaurants were ordered to shut. However, thriving restaurants stuck to their business strategy – make good food and provide a nice sitting area for people to enjoy their food.
When lockdown worldwide came into effect, restaurants fell back on their strategy and asked how can they continue to make good food and serve it to their customers. The answer came – sell food on the curbside and deliver it.
Importance of clear business strategy
Having a clear strategy is important for business owners especially in present times. A business strategist can easily tell whether a firm has a clear strategy or not, by looking at the owner of a firm. It is particularly evident nowadays.
A business strategist looks at strategy as a framework that guides decisions for future actions, like how you can allocate time and resources.
What’s more, building a business puts in a place where you make frequent decisions. A clear strategy makes decision-making easier. The importance of strategy is greatly enhanced at large organizations where decision-making is complex. With a strategy, the allocation of resources is easier or there’s more to lose.
On the other hand, businesses without clearer strategies lose focus, which is even faster in a disruptive time like the present. A few business owners may start a project and eventually lose interest if success doesn’t come fast. This has a negative impacts business:
- Employees lose motivation when they don’t see results if their effort, making them unenthusiastic about future projects.
- Waste of time and resources
Given the present circumstances, many business owners changed their so-far successful strategies for no reason.
This is expected because when owners are confronted with a situation where no outcome is visible or they have very little control over, they tend to lose focus. They have an urge to try something different. This is a result of never having the time to create a real business strategy.
Building a solid strategy
A good strategy is a vision that a business owner has for the company and where he (she) wants to take it. It could be anything. What’s important is – to have a strategy and commit to it.
Making objective decisions is crucial in the growth of the business. Having a strategy guides you towards it by making decisions easier and without second-guessing yourself. It keeps leaders focused and on track.
Further, a business strategy framework gives business owners a course of action that they can take and make every effort count. COVID-19 was undoubtedly disruptive, but it isn’t the sort of disruption that can disrupt businesses with a solid strategy. Or more importantly, has the potential to disrupt businesses that have stuck to their strategy in the past year.
A clear sign of a “bad” strategy is not having sufficient time or getting required help for the business. This indicates that a business owner isn’t clear and not decisive to take everyone in the same direction.
In many cases, an owner can be trying to do many new things at the same time. In these cases, by allowing yourself to center and staying focus, you will take everyone else with you.
Like it’s always said, you will succeed by staying focused and keeping everyone working toward the same goal.