No one ever said it was easy to run your own business, but they also never say what kind of disposition you must have to endure the trials.
We all know about the more famous delights of running a business—long hours, heavy daily stress, difficult clients—but then there’s the more obscure conditions like keeping your cool when your company comes alarmingly close to tanking every month, or betting the farm on a new idea that you’re not certain will help your business. Can you handle it?
If you decided to be an entrepreneur, then odds are, you’re the kind of person who can manage some strain and multitask with the best of them. Even so, everybody starts to crack from time to time, and these suggestions will help you weather your inevitable trials as a business owner.
How to react when revenue slows.
1. Change something.
Not to put too fine a point on it, when something is going wrong, it will probably continue to be wrong unless you change something. So when you find that your revenue stream is thinning out, try something new.
Don’t worry about whether it’s the winning idea that will pull you out of stagnation—just take action, and it doesn’t even have to be dramatic.
Maybe you can launch a social media campaign, or hold a customer appreciation event, or even just send a comment card to your loyal customers. Do anything that is different, and in a positive direction; it can’t hurt.
2. Don’t worry.
Worrying got no one anywhere, ever. That’s not to say that you should ignore the fact that you’re bringing in less money—look at your company ledger every day and consider potential causes and solutions, but don’t panic.
This scenario will be a recurring fixture of your life as an entrepreneur, so you might as well get used to it because you have chosen an occupation that is one of the toughest anywhere—convincing people to give you money for a product, over the next business selling the same thing.
The trick is to teach yourself to look at your bank balance and not let it freak you out, even when it threatens to go into the red, which brings us to the moral of the story…
Nerves of Steel: Cooler heads stay in business.
Every business owner goes through anxiety when they’re barely making enough money to operate, or spending more than they’re bringing in, but the ones who survive are the ones who don’t get rattled.
The idea here is that there will be times when you’re not sure if your business will make it and you’re just staring at your bank balance like a kid waiting for Christmas, but the fact is that you will usually come out of it.
Sometimes there is just a small change you need to make to breathe life back into your business, and sometimes there’s nothing you can do and just have to ride it out. Either way, you’ll be much more productive when you stay calm.