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Small gains in uncertain times

The COVID-19 pandemic is unlike anything we have ever experienced. Many companies are seeing a dramatic decline in sales – with some having to cease operations completely – and the Reserve Bank has predicted the biggest contraction of Australia’s economy since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

 

With such a rapid and dramatic shift in the world’s economic and social landscape, it’s essential that businesses do everything they can to not only survive this crisis, but come out on top. And that planning needs to happen right now.

 

This new podcast series arms business owners with the information and insights they need to mitigate risks, take advantage of new opportunities and adapt so they can come out the other side stronger.

 

To kick things off, I recently caught up with Dr Jana Matthews. Jana is an international expert on entrepreneurial leadership and business growth, the Director of the Australian Centre for Business Growth at the University of South Australia, and Director of the ANZ Business Growth Program.

 

 

During this uncertain time, business owners may find themselves with more down time than they've had for a long time. While it’s important to spend time with our families, it's also a great opportunity for business owners to be learning, adjusting and planning for a post COVID world.

 

In the podcast, Jana outlines three key ways businesses can manage their cashflow now so they are able to hit the ground running when restrictions ease:

 

1. Increase the amount of revenue or turnover;

2. Collect what’s owed to you faster; and

3. Control the speed at which capital flows out.

 

Jana explains how taking advantage of these three actions – in a number of specific ways – can drastically improve the financial position of your business over the longer-term.

 

“Those marginal gains all add up,” Jana says. “They're not just in and of themselves. They actually become exponential.”

 

She also speaks about the five critical things business owners or leaders need to do right now to come out on top. This includes maintaining communication with employees, customers, suppliers and stakeholders – not just about what’s happening, but what the business is doing to respond.

 

“You need to tell people the good, the bad and ugly. They don’t want to hear there’s a problem; we all know there’s a problem. They want to know what your plan [is].”

 

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Jana’s tips for improving cash flow are a great starting off point when making plans for your business. The ANZ Business Growth Program site has a number of additional resources for anyone to access.

 

Listen to the podcast above to hear the full conversation.

 

For more stories from ANZ small businesses and how they’re managing COVID-19 visit ANZ News.

 

For the latest information on COVID-19 visit anz.com/covid-19.

 

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