What Do You Do When Business Slows Down?
There I was, sitting in the middle of the lake. Shore was a distant spec off in the distance. The sails were unfurled and I had a firm grip on the tiller, but we were going no where. I wasn’t beached, my boat wasn’t broken. I had done everything I was supposed to do before my voyage. All systems were go… except one. Mother nature. Vile temptress! So loving, amazing and beautiful at times, yet cruel and teasing now. She had blown me out into the middle of the lake, but then in a flash, decided that was far enough and she no longer wanted to play. There I sat. Left to my thoughts….
Have you ever felt like that in your business? You’ve done everything possible to be ready. Covered every base, double checked every report… then something out of your control brings things to a standstill. You don’t go forward, you don’t go back. No right, no left… Frustration of still is all there is. In times like these, the most important thing is to breathe and follow these few tips to help get you back in action.
Get some perspective: Look at where things are at in your business overall. Recognize that this is just a moment in time. Sometimes patience and calm are all that’s needed. Take the moment of inactivity to reflect on where you have been and make plans for where you want to go. Take a breath and enjoy the view from where you currently sit. It could change in an instant and you need to be prepared. Business could pick up or drop any moment. Make your plans for both.
Reach out and get some help: Who are the people in your life you can talk to? Who is your support system? Your committed listeners? People like coaches, mentors, consultants, and colleagues. Maybe they can provide the push you need to get moving again until the proverbial “wind” picks up! Seek these people out so they can help you assess your situation.
Get in action: Once you have some perspective and have reached out for support and feedback, take action. “Start paddling.” If you know where you want to go from here, start working your way that way. Inactivity is the killer of most businesses. A lot of times, business owners and leaders are paralyzed by fear and/or lack of a plan and they sit. Nothing happens when nothing is done. Just the act of picking a direction may force other things to come to light or occur that will help guide you and if nothing else, being in action usually always is more empowering than doing nothing.
The good news is that you are not in the “middle of a lake” alone. You just have to make the decision to make it happen. In my seminars, speeches and workshops, I talk about “conscious activity”. The world is going to keep moving, whether you choose to move with it or not. You can either choose to make decisions and take action to influence outcomes, or, you can float along and see what happens.