By Chris Nwedo
A powerful *cancer* killing most businesses in Nigeria is disgusting dishonesty. Many businesses have collapsed not because they have no potential to do well…
Nigerian economy is under tremendous stress. The stress has crippled countless businesses as the standard of living among the citizens has unprecedentedly lowered to the point that many families are groaning in pains of hunger and starvation.
The problem is not only the intolerant economy but political uncertainties and pervasive insecurity. These are enormous challenges to business people because investment climates are hampered. This is an attempt at providing some strategies for containing the frustrations. This is a time for a complete overhaul of business plans or strategies to make them actively reflective of the present situations. It therefore means that relying on the old plans and routine business thinking are erroneous.
And when a business environment has been vigorously shaken by political uncertainties, misplaced economic priorities and intentional destruction of tools for economic productivity by the indiscretions of the politicians, business people are concerned. To survive, they have an obligation to develop ways to ensure that their companies or businesses are able to overcome the challenges and persevere. Below are some of the time proven strategies:
1. Embrace the reality of a difficult business environment
Things are constantly changing. As a business person, it is now do or die to experiment new ideas, to change your attitude and business culture to suit the reality. You are challenged to change your old systems of getting clients and your relationship with them because their priorities may have changed as a response to the difficult nature of the economy. Make pleasing every customer the centre of your new strategy.
2. Be Open To innovations
Don’t be afraid to take some risks that can favourably change your fortune. In changing times, you must adapt and remain flexible. *What once worked, may not work now.* Be creative in serving your current and future customers. Consider what resources you have to utilize. Don’t waste your time and resources on useless adventures because they do not add any value to your business. This is the time for prudence in practicality. Look for products that are in demand and carefully invest in them. Promote your business. No business is small the only thing small in any business is a plan. Look for what is in demand and fill the gap.
3. Maintain An Objective Viewpoint
You need to understand exactly what your business needs. This ability is immeasurable in positive impact on your business. Let your business plans be *based* on objective needs of your peculiarity not choice. It is illogical to spend your efforts impressing people when your business is dying of starvation.
4. Search and acquire knowledge
Knowledge provides directions. Knowledge is powerful when you have it and apply it according to the needs of your business. Divert the time you spend on social media and wasteful political arguments to deepen your knowledge in your business. The phones are for making business contacts and familiarizing with people relevant to the next productive movements you have planned for your business. Surely, you can manage business related anxieties comfortably and profitably if *you use* the phone well. Use the phone to explore business opportunities.
5. Do something special
This is an unusual time. Unusual time calls for unusual insight and commitment. Doing what everyone does in an unusual time is endlessly counter productive. Maintain existing customers with spices, attract the new ones with new ideas. This allows you to remain relevant or stay ahead of other competitors. “Setting goals that are SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely) is a no-brainer to increasing sustainability and productivity in the long term for any business regardless of the time. The key parameters here are having short-term tactical plan and a long-term strategic solution in place”.
6. Establish Different Revenue Streams
Creating multiple revenue streams provides financial security and reduces risks, especially during times of market uncertainty. In luxury sectors, companies add new sources of income by planning for multiple pop-up stores across different locations, collaborating with like-minded companies on events and opening wholesale accounts to forecast predictable sales.
7. Start practicing honesty.
Be more sincere, target quality services and be reliable to survive and grow. The powerful *cancer* killing most businesses in Nigeria is disgusting dishonesty. Many businesses have collapsed not because they have no potential to do well, but because they were founded by dishonest entrepreneurs and managed fraudulently. During changing or challenging times, being reliable is a major key for triumph .