Sign Builder October 2020

Page 37

MANAGEMENT

BY JOHN HACKLE HACKLEY

PIVOT FOR SHOP OWNERS

Photo: Shutterstock/SFIO CRACHO.

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Ten business development fundamentals to survive now and thrive later.

any shop owners are struggling to survive in the present economy. With markets eroding (or shifting), customers and resources are scarce. The truth is the economic landscape is not going to improve anytime soon. It’s a fierce battle. So if you don’t come up with better ways to manage your way out of the pandemic—you’re out of business. Yes things are pretty messed up right now, but having the attitude of “we’ll be okay if we can just get through it now” is a wait-and-see game that puts you on your heels, off balance, and not prepared to charge forward as soon as possible. If this is your mindset, you’re setting

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yourself up for a big surprise. Look at recent history to be reminded that no organization is bulletproof. This dysfunction is a huge hindrance in a company’s ability to survive now much less thrive later. All of which brings me to pivoting. The fundamentals of “pivot” are not new concepts, though they have been popularized recently. They are basic healthy “business 101” practices that are not any different than what successful owners do when managing a business in a stable, non-pandemic economy. To put it more simply: “It’s not rocket science, folks! Run your sign business; don’t let it run you!” Do the things you know you should be doing but haven’t been. The pandemic

has now exposed short cuts and complacent business operations you could formerly overlook. So maybe now is the time for a change towards better, stronger, more dependable methods. The following ten “pivot” strategies are provided as guidelines to help you get back on course. You’ll find them valuable reminders if you weren’t paying attention, good practices for sustainability now, and growth engines for the future. Your customers, employees, and banker will be glad that you made them your new norm. 1. Lead as a role model. It’s not enough to own the company. You must be present and set an example that supports the culture you want in your firm. You are the

October 2020

Sign Builder Illustrated

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