How to Adapt your Business in Times of Political Uncertainty

How to Adapt your Business in Times of Political Uncertainty

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Social-political situations are challenging when it seeps into the work environment. Whether they are government shutdowns, protests, civil wars, or movements, companies have to face the impacts with these events.

The Impact

The social-political uncertainty has a major effect on the cost of work, cost of resources, and customer behaviour. It threatens business routines and activities and the business may even have to stop their operations due to new foreign importing and exporting laws.

Detailed Analysis of different outcomes is a MUST

To control the scope of uncertainty, it is imperative to evaluate the issues in order to adjust corporate tactics. You have to consider whether there is a big price jump due to the social-political situation, if it jeopardizes the business continuity, or what position it currently is in the market. These analysis can depend on what type of business it is. When it comes to declining markets, entrepreneurs have to be careful with moving the business to a new location since it can be expensive. On the flip side, moving the business might be a good option since it protects the key activities during the crisis. However, if the market is growing then the business has opportunities and resources to be more prepared and ready for uncertainty.

Strategies to deploy in a declining market

There are two strategies that can be used for steady or declining markets. The first strategy is the ‘Hedging Strategy’ in which the activities are reorganized towards the people that can get past the political issues. This is used when firms are faced with uncertainty with economic conditions, such as human resources or internal control. What firms can do is lower the function prices and have a drop in sales. For instance, due to the Brexit, Sony decided to keep all its stores in the UK but moved their EU headquarters to the Netherlands in order to keep their key activities in a safer place.

When there is a high uncertainty due to a decline in the market, the risks and threats to business continuity can be jeopardized if the businesses do not have reserves of cash and a presence in the economy. The strategy in this case should be to salvage as much as possible with saving what you can and lessening the negative effects. To recompense for the drop in profit, you will have to use the reserves of cash and try to dodge selling previous assets that could become handy if the economy rises.

Strategies to deploy in an uncertain market

The first strategy is to rebalance, meaning to relocate strategic and leadership assets to an alternative location that is nearby well-known growth engines. This can be very costly, but it is a practical method that focuses on the resources of the firm to be able to escape the consequences of uncertainty. The other strategy is to shift, which means relocating important parts of activities to another region starting with the functions that can easily be shifted with low costs. This is a thorough method since it is more organized, fast-paced, and its goal is to get rid of the uncertainty in the market.

How to Regain Your Confidence when it Falters

How to Regain Your Confidence when it Falters

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Confidence is something that is not always guaranteed. Sometimes you may feel that you are strong and capable to tackle your challenges and other times you may feel out of place and unprepared to respond.

The Dip

Feeling unsure and scared is normal for every human being no matter how experienced you may feel. When it goes from high confidence to low confidence, it is called “the dip”. Every type of leader has experienced the dip, and it can result the most capable leaders feel discouraged and enable them to go off track. It is important to realize that your confidence does not get affected by how it wavers, but it ultimately matters how you can bring your low confidence back to your high confidence.

Break the paradox

One way of doing that is by reframing the dip. Some people say that all leaders have experienced the dip at one point in their lifetime, but it is crucial that these dips do not allow leaders to slack off and go off track. For example, imagine you are a well-known leader about to have an important meeting. Your goal is to thoroughly communicate, gain trust by revealing treasured insights, and be able to earn the right to get an invite back. But if you are new at the job, the hole between your lack of experience and your ambitions can make you highly likely to dip. This can result in an authenticity paradox, where you still use your old methods of business while the company is growing instead of developing new methods. This paradox happens when leaders believe that they are being “authentic” and use it as an excuse to stay in their comfort zone. You can avoid this paradox by recognizing that you are a work in progress. This would allow you to directly face the challenges instead of going back to what you are familiar with. This change in perspective can inspire you to grow as a person, and try new tactics through trial and error when there are inescapable situations. As a leader, once you feel that you are dipping, you should start reframing yourself by following your instincts and facing the reality.

Strictly No Compromises

Another method to manage your dip is to limit your inner compromises. For example, you might intend to take some risks by being who you are and boldly asking for something that you want. Instead during the dip, you play the safe card at the expense of sacrificing you own needs. If you catch yourself making an unreasonable compromise, you should stop it and rethink your decisions.

It is good to be prepared when you feel that your confidence is taking the dip by being aware of your choices and following your gut.

How Too Much Praise Devalues Appreciation

How Too Much Praise Devalues Appreciation

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One key to success is showing gratitude in the work environment. When a worker is performing well in their workplace, it is important to show that you’ve noticed with a congratulatory shout-out or a tap on the back. Studies have shown that showing gratitude in the workplace makes the worker feel important, gives them confidence with their work performance, and only encourages them to get better.

The Bigger is NOT always the Better

Overdoing how you show gratitude can lose its specialty. For instance, appraisals should not be given to workers for doing simple tasks or duties that is already expected to be done in their job. Appraisals should be given when workers have gone out of their way and have given a lot of effort into the task. When small accomplishments are tackled, a great way to acknowledge them is through email.

A personal touch means a LOT

When big accomplishments are achieved, the thanks would mean a lot more when it is done in person, and even maybe with a public recognition. In order to figure out who is doing an exceptional job in the workplace, regular meetings with discussions on achievements and improvements are an efficient way to do so.

It’s NOT always about the Money

Another way of showing appreciation is through money, but that can get a little tricky. Bonuses means that the workers would receive an unsteady compensation. It would result in the feeling of disappointment when they are not able to go above and beyond for the company and fail at attaining the bonus. Research shows that the odd bonuses offered does not truly improve performance within the workplace. Nonetheless, getting a raise in the job wage is better than surprise bonuses. An alternative way in showing gratitude is through parties and celebrations. Job events, such as holiday parties shows that companies care for their workers. It is vital to thank your workers with a speech at these type of functions and shower them with food.

To sum up, any type of genuine recognition can go a long way. Showing gratitude makes the person receiving it happy and allows them to enjoy their job.

Customer Surveys – Is this actually working?

Customer Surveys – Is this actually working?

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Filling out questionnaires can be time consuming and it can take a lot of effort. For numerous companies, they use surveys as a way to “talk to customers”.

Silly Surveys

Normally after purchases are made, a visit from the hospital or a service obtained, either you are asked to fill out a survey or you get a random phone call. In reality this is not the right approach in getting insightful feedback about your company. What you should be doing is talking to customers face to face. Even though this might be costly and takes up a lot of time, this is the only way to get honest answers. This approach can be done through workshops.

Work For it

Conducting public workshops on strategic planning is an excellent method in figuring out what your customers want. It is about quality not quantity. Your goal is to learn how customers make decisions and how they problem solve. You need to understand their needs and wants and you can’t get any of that from a basic questionnaire. Start off your workshop by asking a question such as, “What makes you choose to go to one convenience store instead of the other?”, since every person has been a customer to a convenience store at least one point in their life. The responses that you would receive would be focused on where the store is located, the quality of their customer service, the variety of options that are available, how reasonable their prices are, and what time the store opens and closes. These factors are the strategic influences that different stores have. You can use these strategies to your advantage to develop more customer strategies and ultimately making your business stand out and have a competitive advantage. It is important to note that not one person can come up with all these factors since every person has their own unique experiences. It takes a group of people to come up with the conclusion of these strategies.

Surveys Are a No-No

A lot of companies think that surveys are enough to understand their customers since it shows percentages of what people like and dislike. However, surveys are unoriginal and does not give you a real insight. Interviews are the best way to get thoughtful customer input.

Why Sharing your Failures with your Team Helps

Why Sharing your Failures with your Team Helps

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As a leader if you’re always talking to your employees about earning a lot of sales and reminding them about how much they are supposed to achieve, it can be overwhelming for employees to constantly be hearing about that. A simple way of having your team reach success is by sharing your personal failures in life.

Sets an Example

Once you are successful your achievements are obvious, but your failures to get there are not as out there. Usually people envy others that are successful. However sharing the struggles of how they reached that success allows individuals to admire and respect them instead.

Interpersonal Emotion Regulation

Interpersonal emotion regulation is when you can control how people feel and react by how things are said to them. For instance when you choose to be courteous or impolite, you are using your interpersonal emotion regulation. To add on, it is easy to feel envious towards managers since they move higher up in the company effortlessly through promotion programs. In order to not seem self-centred about the promotions when sharing it with others, it is wise for the manager to discuss any setbacks or failures that they encountered to get to where they are at this point.

Builds a Rapport

Sharing the struggle stories can help others to relate their stories with you, decreases internal competition with the other workers, and motivates them to want that success. An incredible way to encourage workers during meetings is to have them open up about their mistakes in life and what they have learned from it. Discussing your failures also helps others to avoid the same mistakes when they try to reach their success.

Shows Humility

People would find you more likeable when you disclose your successes and achievements along with your failures and battles. A positive workplace can only happen when people are grounded, supporting, and humble.