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Whatever the size of your business, these tips will help you thrive

For businesses of all sizes, the need to be prepared for change is not a new idea. Well before the pandemic, the concept was widely discussed in management circles as critical to long-term growth and success. In order to thrive, the textbooks read, businesses needed to anticipate and prepare for any and all disruptions, no matter how extraordinary the circumstances.

Fast forward to today. Things have changed to an extent rarely seen in history, quickly upending normalcy in how we live, work and play. The level of uncertainty is unlike anything many have experienced before. Small and medium-sized businesses have been hit especially hard and are being challenged to adapt — at a furious pace — in order to survive.

Not surprisingly, businesses with a well-considered, well-executed approach will be the ones that are best positioned for success — both now and in the future. The banking relationship is a key part of that success. Here we lay out some important considerations for business owners looking to position their companies for long-term growth during uncharted times.

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  • Even as the economy begins its phased reopening, we are still a long way from returning to normal. With many businesses already experiencing revenue losses and cash-flow problems, the prospect of further operational disruption is understandably discouraging. Now more than ever, business owners need to carefully consider their capital structure, debt levels and financing to make sure that current needs are balanced against future costs. Country Bank has been supporting the liquidity needs of our clients through this tough time and is prepared to work with them as we navigate challenges together — providing ideas beyond just rates and offering decades of experience and sound advice.

    The current state of affairs underscores the value of having a plan in place to prepare for the unexpected and ensure that business operations can continue as normally as possible, regardless of internal or external disruption. Every business, regardless of size, should have a business continuity plan to:

    1. Anticipate potential threats
    2. Articulate what will happen to the interests and assets of the business if unforeseen events occur. Many companies, for example, found themselves scrambling to accommodate an entirely remote workforce necessitated by the pandemic. While no one could have anticipated the depth of the crisis, those who had the systems and infrastructure at least partially in place were able to adapt more quickly, and minimize the impact on operations and productivity
  • When running a business, it can be beneficial to have the advice of a trusted partner. There are many that offer such services, including outside consultants and management experts. A business banking team, too, can be an excellent resource for business owners seeking advice. A top bank will have an experienced team of professionals to help guide businesses on everything from capital raising and investing to cash management and deposits.

Resiliency is about more than just riding out the storm. It’s about having a strategy in place to flourish when the storm passes. Although the future remains uncertain, businesses that remain agile, strategic, and well-prepared will be in the best position to emerge from adversity and continue along a path of growth.