The COVID-19 pandemic can be a great time to grow your business.
It’s true that 2020 and 2021 have been difficult for many companies, however, opportunities can be found within this pandemic economy.
In addition, as vaccination rates rise and infection rates decline, many parts of the world are opening up. This brings its own set of opportunities.
Here are five important actions that will help your company take advantage of today’s pandemic economy:
1. Honestly Assess Your Business. Ascertain how your company measures up against today’s most pressing questions:
● Are you in the right industry, and what is its growth potential?
● Do you have the right cybersecurity to keep your customers’ data and your data protected? What about protection from ransomware, shutdowns, hackers and other cyber invaders?
● Do you have a disaster plan and recovery plan for potential disasters, including another pandemic, a hurricane or a cybersecurity breach?
● Do you have a succession plan?
2. Assess Your Financing. If you received Payroll Protection Program or Economic Injury Disaster Loan funds due to COVID-19, think about how you might use this cash infusion to grow.
3. Groom Future Leaders. Most CEOs say their biggest roadblock to growth is finding, hiring and retaining the right talent. Formal mentoring programs, informal mentoring matches and development plans are key pieces of grooming talented employees for growth. Invest in webinars, skillsdevelopment courses or educational reimbursement programs.
4. Understand Where to Look for Growth Opportunities. The pandemic introduced many new opportunities as demand for personal protective equipment, grocery and alcohol delivery, and technology solutions grew. What new needs or desires will the current opening introduce? Pandemic-related shortages and supply chain disruptions have caused many large organizations to consider diversifying their supplier base – which may mean more opportunities for your company.
5. Build Strategic Alliances or Embark on Joint Ventures. Together, you may have the capabilities or capacity to land business you couldn’t have landed alone.
The Minority Business Development Agency Miami and Orlando Business Centers, as well as the Florida State Minority Supplier Development Council, can help you with all five of these actions.
Through matchmakers, one-on-one consulting and other programs, they help minority-owned businesses connect with large organizations, learn about supplier opportunities, bid for and win contracts, and connect with other minority-owned companies for strategic alliances and joint ventures.
They also offer business consulting, assistance obtaining financing, and access to webinars and other education. Learn more at fsmsdc.org, mbdaorlandocenter.com and www. mbdamiamicenter.com.
Beatrice Louissaint is president and CEO of the Florida State Minority Supplier Development Council, one of 23 regional councils affiliated with the National Minority Supplier Development Council. The FSMSDC acts as a liaison between corporate America and government agencies and Minority Business Enterprises in Florida. It operates U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency Business Centers serving southern and central Florida. Learn more about the FSMSDC’s programs and services at fsmsdc.org, or call (305) 762-6151.