Don’t Panic

Don’t Panic

“If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you…” 

..then you’ll be on the road to making a success of your business. It can be easy to panic, to opt for the knee jerk reaction, especially when that’s what everyone else is doing, but at 20:80e, we’re firm believers in the simple mantra… “don’t panic!” 

That is, of course, unless you don’t have a plan… 

If you’re standing on a sinking ship and you don’t know where the life boats are, you’re probably going to panic. If you’re stuck up a tree and youre scared of heights, with no support to get you down, you’re probably going to panic then, too. 

If your business takes a dramatic hit in the blink of an eye. If you’re just one bad job away from closure. If you’ve been affected by a global pandemic and you’ve got NO PLAN, then yes, fair enough, it might be time to panic. 

But, if you are prepared, if you have planned, and if you are perfectly placed for any eventuality, no matter how devastating, no matter how random, then you absolutely have no need to panic. 

So many P’s there, and the most important one is ‘planning’, because it is a vital part of running a business that is inexplicably skipped over, rushed or ignored altogether by a huge number of businesses who either don’t care, or don’t know just how important proper business planning is. 

Our members know how important this process is, because we share our methods, our advice and our support with them, enabling them to create bespoke and unique business plans that are proactive and purposeful, rather than reactive and rubbish. 

There are so many strands to good business planning that it’s hard to cover them all in one sitting, but let’s look at the basics when it comes to avoiding panic. 

We’ll concentrate on the phrase ‘back up’ because it can be applied to several different contexts, all of which are vital to protecting your plan from causing preventable panic. 

So many P’s again, let’s hope they turn into pounds. 

The first type of ‘back up’ you need, is the school playground style back up, your mates, the people in your corner. Who can you call on for back up when things get tough?  

It’s unlikely (not impossible) that the suppliers and contractors who pay you will be there if it gets bumpy (that’s just the way of the world) but all of the stakeholders who you pay should be, and for the right reasons too, if you’ve invested the time and energy into building mutually beneficial relationships.  

Your accountant should be rooting for you, backing you up with suggestions for moving money around to your benefit.  

Your lawyers should be backing you up by keeping you on top of your game, compliant and legitimate.  

Your business support network should be all the back up you need, as long as you have taken care to nurture it.  

Oh, and if you’re looking for back up like this, it helps if it’s a two way street. Would you be some other business’s back up, when things get hard for them?  

That’s the fisticuffs out of the way, and with an army of people behind you, backing you up, there really is no need to panic. You can ask questions, troubleshoot, outsource, offload, have a good bitch and an ever better whinge, just so long as you have your back up. 

Secondly, remember not to get your back up. See what we did there? Clever isn’t it? In business, people tend to get more out of their transactions when they are amiable and amenable in their manner, as in how they deal with other people, than if they are cross, short or even aggressive.  

So, don’t get your back up. Speak to people how you would want to be spoken to, and don’t lose your head, even if everyone else is ranting and raving.  

At times, you’ll feel like the swan, smooth and graceful on the surface, whilst paddling like mad under the water, but if you keep your cool, stay focused, and manage not to get your back up, you’ll get so much more out of your recovery from a wide range of sticky situations, and you won’t need to panic. 

The third and final use of the term ‘back up’ that we’re going to shoe horn into this piece, is literal back up. Data back up, as in bullet proofing your business in case of a system failure, a security breach, or some on site disaster, maybe a fire or a flood.  

So much of what we all do now, in our personal lives as well as in business, is dependent on the internet and on invisible storage that exists through wires and in hard drives. We’re not IT experts, and it all seems a little magic sometimes, until of course, it goes wrong and ‘Computer Says No…’ 

This is only a problem if your business continuity plans aren’t worth the paper they’re written on, because if they are, you’ll have remote storage, IT support and a recovery plan that will get you back up and running, ready to trade, and back to business as usual, in next to no time. A little clue here, that pen drive you’ve had since uni isn’t going to cut it. 

The take home message of all this ‘back up’ talk, is that with the right level of back up, in all its guises, you simply don’t need to panic, no matter what.  

People make rash decisions when they panic, because they have to, they have no other choice. 

But, if you know where the life boats are, if you’ve got mates with ladders to get you down from the tree, or if you have a hardworking, reliable team of people behind you who you know, like and trust, then there really is no room, or need to panic. 

Where can you arm yourself with all of this?  

Do you feel a little under prepared having listened to what we have to say? 

Come on board with 20:80 and before too long, you’ll find that there really is no need to panic, for you, either,