So you’ve done the right thing and found the experts to help you with turning your business around. But the words 'Business Restructure' are still worrying for what’s to come. Here are our tips to help you prepare, survive – and even thrive.
Being in business is hard work where very few companies achieve their initial projections. Henry Ford once said “Failure is only the opportunity to begin again.” In Business Restructure, restructure is not failure – it’s change.
Change is always difficult to deal with because we as humans, find routines comfortable and familiar. Routines allow for systems and predictability, so we feel safe. Without a routine, life is too uncertain and far less efficient. But what routine can also do is kill innovation and create a rut to get stuck in.
When we’ve come to the momentous decision of a Business Restructure, it’s acknowledging that our business has severe financial difficulties, which come with
- Incorrect pricing structures
- Sales are down, profit is a struggle
- A lack of access to finance
- Poor cashflow
- Disorganisation in processes and administration
- High employee turnover
Business Restructure inspires change, and with preparation, a great attitude and keeping your eye on the prize, Restructure will be a success.
Be Honest. Be Kind.
See your business for what it is.
This also might be the point where you deserve a good stiff whisky, because a few truths are coming your way.
The first successful strategy for business turnaround starts with the realistic judgement of your business. And this all starts with understanding your true financial position - which means precise financial reports. The truth is not always kind, nor is it nice. But the truth does allow you to move forward to a more positive future.
Once you see your business for what it is, now you can see you for who you are.
And that is someone trying to succeed in a world where all the obstacles are against you – the government certainly doesn’t make it easy, the market is constantly changing, and technology is eternally forcing us to keep up. The reality of business is that it is mentally and emotionally taxing - so be make sure to be kind to yourself too. How you feel during this entire process is at the top of the list. Go easy on you.
Don’t forget. As long as you are moving forward, you are heading to a more positive future. Don’t be afraid. The professionals are here to make things better.
One aspect of Business Restructure that comes to an owner is feeling like you no longer have control. You can still retain a sense of management with your business with a rethink of business formula and strategy.
Look over your business plan and update it. Don’t have a business plan? Make one.
Go back to the beginning when you first started and ask the essential questions:
- Why does your business exist?
- Where do you want it to go?
- What problem are you solving for your customers?
- Where do you stand in the marketplace?
When you can present a business plan of action to the professionals that looks to the future, you’ll feel as though you remain at the heart and soul of the business.
In our blog Make Your Business Future Proof, we noted that learning to adapt in an ever-changing marketplace is at the top of the list to success. This particularly means understanding your customers – and how to reach them so they buy. The heart of business success lies in its marketing – but it is seldom the area a business owner will pay attention to with all the pressures of sales, operations, risk and employees. Take this time to rethink your marketing strategy and research the market to reshape your business goals.
- Are you changing with the market?
- Define your target market: where do they work, live, eat and play?
- What makes your business stand out as its unique selling point?
- What is the shortest path between your business and you customer?
The answers to these questions forms the long-term strategy to targeting your customers. And given a Business Restructure is so transformational, the new marketing strategy could also include a rebrand. Refreshing the brand of your business will reenergise the company with a new vision for the future that makes you stand out in the marketplace.
Changes are coming. Significant changes will be implemented to company structure, so you’ll need to be involved in creating plans - particularly with employees as they prepare for their new roles.
- Look at writing up new job descriptions including clear tasks with projected results
- Prepare training sessions for employees taking on new roles and place systems in place for support
- Create an organisational chart so employees understand the new structure of the business and who they’ll be reporting to
While the change isn’t going to be easy, it’s going to be a smooth process because the professionals are onboard with a detailed plan.
Accept, Be & Lead The Change
Your employees will embrace the changes coming if you do first. Be involved with an attitude that looks at the end goal - which especially means keeping positive. Encourage and motivate while demonstrating grace under pressure.
There will be a range of moods and opinions to face during restructure. They can come from ourselves or from those around us, and include
- Worry over personal failure
- Preferring to stick to the familiar old routine
- Not committing to the new changes
- Any denial change is required
- An unwillingness to learn new systems and processes
- Fear of the unknown
If we’re aware of these attitudes, we can prepare to be strong against them using the power of positivity. A positive attitude is always contagious and will stop any negativity and insecurity in its tracks.
Gather The Troupes
As restructure shakes business up, we also need to remember the impact this has on employees. Restructures can be unsettling, creating an environment of uncertainty, insecurity and stress while impacting on morale and productiveness. Strong assured leadership that supports employees to maintain performance is critical to moving forward.
- Hold a team meeting where everyone can share their concerns together
- Let employees know how the restructure is going to affect your role and how you plan to cope with it
- Reassure them their needs will be addressed with no questions left unanswered
- If employees need to be let go, be honest and straightforward. The sooner they are aware, the more time they’ll have to look for a new job
- Let each employee know how vital their new role is in moving forward and if there are any questions with new roles and tasks, speak up while there’s opportunity for change during the restructuring process
This is the time to connect with your employees on a professional and emotional level, showing them you understand and relate with what they’re about to go through.
Communication is key to business success and becomes even more essential in a Business Restructure. Any worries, increased demands or pressures not addressed will affect performance, so make sure to
- Keep and encourage an open-door policy
- Inspire open communication and transparency to address any concerns and fears
- Communicate about changes
- Focus on team building
- Nurture a culture of health and wellbeing
- Establish milestones and goals, and celebrate in small ways when these goals are reached
- Reward and recognise for a greater sense of value, job satisfaction and pride
Good relationships start with great communications and is the link between confusion and clarity.
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