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4 Ways to Keep Your Small Business Afloat When Times are Tough

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What do you do when your business hits rough waters, as will happen to most companies at some point? The secret lies in putting down the groundwork ahead of time. A stable foundation can help see you through slowdowns and other setbacks. Each of the acts below can help you build this stability.

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Be Mentally Prepared

You can’t keep a business afloat with sheer willpower but having the right mindset will take you a long way when your startup is struggling. Start with a business plan that is rooted in your vision. Believing in yourself and building your courage and resilience can help you weather stressful times because you’ll be more likely to remain clear-headed and think through problems instead of panicking and making mistakes. You should be realistic but remain positive and persevere. If you’re looking for inspiration, look to other business leaders who have survived challenges, such as Steve Jobs. Keep yourself mentally strong by taking good care of yourself as well. Knowing that entrepreneurs need more sleep to be able to exert the energy needed to run their businesses should be enough to encourage you to prioritize it.

Have the Right Equipment

Right Equipment Small Business Afloat

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Saving money is important, but cutting necessary corners is not the way to do it. Not only do you need the right equipment to accomplish missioncritical tasks but your employee morale will suffer if you try to make them do their jobs without the tools they need. Conversely, you may increase employee retention if you make it easier for them to get their jobs done. If fleet management is one part of your business, you might want to review a guide on ELDs for trucks and what the benefits are. Since Samsara offers ELD capabilities, this cannot only help with compliance but offer other benefits as well, such as saving money and reducing paperwork.

Understand and Use SWOT and SMART

Don’t make the mistake of thinking SWOT and SMART are just useless bits of corporate jargon. These are actually excellent frameworks for many different situations, including businesses. The first acronym stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and refers to the four areas you can analyze and review to determine what is and isn’t working in your business. The first two refer to internal elements within your organization, and the last two refer to external forces. By looking at these four areas, you can set business goals that minimize the effects of the negative aspects and capitalize on the strengths and opportunities. Keeping SMART in mind will help you set goals. These words stand for the qualities that every goal should have. They should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timelimited.

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Remember Your Customers

It’s important to remember that without your customers, you don’t have a business at all. In addition, your core of loyal customers probably generates the bulk of your business. This doesn’t mean you should discourage the others, but you should focus on how to retain and reward the most loyal in particular, especially since they are the ones that will stick with you even in rough patches. Listening to feedback and treating every customer with respect and enthusiasm can go a long way toward making customers want to return to use your products or services.

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