Posts Tagged ‘bankruptcy’

How To Alleviate Small Business Distress

December 18, 2009

2009 has not been a good year for many small firms.
In our surveys, small business respondents have talked about the failure of clients and customers to pay their bills.
“Its like a cascading waterfall, our customers don’t pay on time, we can’t pay our suppliers,” lamented one midwestern focus group participant.
Some smaller firms have been forced to contemplate closing or bankruptcy.
This is a drastic step that should only be considered as a last resort.
One supplier we know took a job and continues his business at night and on the weekends.
Here are some things a small business leader can do to alleviate some of these pressures.
* Pay only the bills that will close the company down if not satisfied.
* Talk to suppliers and stretch out payments and/or ask for discounts for prompt payment.
* Seek financial help from banks or business partners.
* Offer discounts to customers for quicker payment.
* Look at your current situation and try to take a long view of what is happening.
* Talk to your employees and ask them how they can help. (Never borrow from your employees by withholding pay, rather ask them what they can do to help the financial situation. Often, you will be surprised at some of the positive suggestions that come out of these talks.)
* Cut your own personal expenses to ease the mental pressure .
* Above all, be positive to employees and customers alike.
Our parents, grandparents and great grandparents often talk about the great depression.
Pundits say this last recession was/is as bad or worse than the depths of 1930’s crash.
Often, they look back and say that era encompassed some good times and a great learning experience.
View this year as a learning experience and remember to stay positive, things will get better.