Crisis Management Strategies for Business Owners in Nigeria
Crisis is one thing that can affect any business owner, be it a large or small business. While for some business owners, they might be able to foresee the crisis, it might not be foreseeable in some other cases.
When it happens, it has a huge tendency to cause complete havoc to the business/company’s image. However, with the right strategies in place, business owners can devise ways out of any crisis without completely ruining everything the business stands for.
Below is a list of crisis management strategies for Nigerian business owners to adopt when a crisis arises.
- Admit there is a problem
The first step towards finding solutions to any problem is first admitting there is one. Trying to ignore the problem or pretending it isn’t there will only make things worse for the business owner. In fact, ignoring it because it seems like a small problem is the more reason it might grow into a bigger one if left unaddressed.
One thing remains which is that no matter how severe the crisis appears to be, the capacity is always present in you as a business owner to find a way out of the crisis. Once you admit there is a crisis, you will be propelled to take the right course of action towards solving it.
- Be objective about the situation
It is very possible to become overwhelmed in periods of crisis. However, as a business owner, it is important not to allow such get to you. Handling such a situation requires you to be as calm as possible. This will help you analyze the situation objectively and, in the process, you will be able to analyze the cause of the crisis.
The moment the root cause is ascertained, it makes it easier to work towards a possible solution. In addition, being a business owner might also mean you have people working for you. In times of crisis, it is important for you as the leader to maintain all composure so as to reassure them and help them maintain their confidence.
Letting emotions take over you will make it difficult to view things from perspectives that can bring about solutions. Maintaining your composure as a business owner helps you in taking calculated decisions which will improve the situation.
- Optimize your workforce
Your workforce can also play a vital role in managing crisis when it arises. Once there is a crisis, it is time to survey your team and dig out talents that can help come up with solutions. Any employee in the team that adds no value whatsoever should be dismissed no matter the relationship you have with them.
About 20% of business revenue gets spent on paying staff salaries. In times of crisis, there will be a need to cut down on these expenses. This is why it is imperative to let go of employees who don’t bring much to the table. For employees who add so much value to the business, it might be a good time to increase their revenues.
- Seek outside help when necessary
Personal ego isn’t something to be nursed in times of crisis. Rather, it is a time to seek help outside. There are professionals who can help restore your business when crisis strikes, do not hesitate to bring them on board with immediate effect. In a situation where it becomes difficult to let go of some non-performing staff because of the relationship you share with them, hiring a professional will be the best way to go about it.
In addition, seeking short-term loans from lenders can also be a way out of some crisis. Getting short-term loans can either be in the form of extended credit lines or deferred payments. Government agencies announce some relief programs from time to time which helps lenders have conversations in that regard with business owners.
As a business owner however, it is vital to reach out early to these lenders before things get out of hand. While getting loans might not be the way out of every crisis, it is important to know what works for you as a business owner.
- Don’t forget the power of social media
One of the most important channels of communication a business owner can take advantage of is social media. Establishing a strong social media team during a business crisis is very important. The purpose of this team is to help in monitoring and posting different relevant activities across social media platforms during the crisis.
When a crisis is not well managed by a business owner, it can waste all efforts and time put together in building such a business. When a crisis is well managed on the other hand, it is a clear sign that such a business has the capacity and necessary procedures in place to address any issue that might rare its ugly head in the future of the business.
- Have a succession plan
Planning is one vital crisis management strategy for business owners in Nigeria to adopt. During a crisis, ensure you outline all the necessary steps you can follow if things get worse. In addition, your plan should include measures you can take to get your business out of the mess.
Even without a crisis, it is vital for you as a Nigerian business owner to map out a plan in advance should in case any crisis arises in future. That way, you won’t be caught completely off-guard when it strikes.
Another advantage of mapping out a plan in advance is that it gives everyone involved the opportunity to think straight and clearly. In addition, you as a business owner will be able to bring all experts required on board and they will be able to give advice which will be very useful whenever a crisis strikes.
Every crisis can be managed, all it takes is adopting the right strategies. With the above strategies in place, bouncing back after a crisis hits becomes a pretty easy task for business owners in Nigeria.