3 C ‘s To Coronavirus Proof Your Equine Business
As coronavirus tightens its grip on the equine industry, it’s time to prepare so your equine business can weather the storm. On a personal note, whilst this is a new virus, it’s not a new business challenge. Over the last 18 years of being involved in & running my own equine business, I’ve been through the 2008 financial crash, the fall out from the foot & mouth disease outbreak, business partners dying & turmoil in my personal life. I’m still here, this isn’t my first rodeo & I know the mentality you need to get through the next few months and thrive, not just survive.
Over the next couple of weeks you’re going to hear a lot more from me with practical steps you can take to protect your equine business from coronavirus, specific to your business type, but to start here are the 3 Cs every equine business owner needs to be focusing on.
This is what you’re likely to be most worried about right now & you’re correct to be anticipating that some of your existing customers may be slower to pay than normal & that some of your sales pipeline may cancel or delay. To help mitigate this, keep a close eye on all your outstanding invoices & follow up promptly as soon as they fall overdue.
Put extra lines of credit in place if you can – better to have it & not need it, than need it & not have it!
If you find yourself in a tough spot, be honest with your suppliers – you’re far more likely to be able to arrange a payment plan & make sure you maintain a trading relationship in the longer term this way.
Now is the time to collaborate with others in your business network to work together on joint marketing or new products & projects. You’ll be able to launch things faster & will instantly double your network to sell into.
Another really important reason to collaborate is because as a leader in your business right now, you’re going to be feeling exposed, vulnerable & quite possibly quietly freaking out whilst keeping up a front for your customers, team & family. Having a business partner will give you support from someone who totally gets it, plus it’s more fun to work in a team, especially if you’re suddenly thrust into working from home when you prefer the buzz of coffee shops or an office.
Don’t have anyone to collaborate with? Then you need to get yourself into our Facebook group which is packed full of equine business owners like you. You need to be a member of the EBA to participate in our online community, so if you’re not, click here and join us!
Get a great support network
The next few weeks are going to be much easier if you’ve got a great support system around you. You’re trying to do things that you might never have done before, at speed, with a lot of external pressures. You may have a strong support network in your personal life but right now you’re probably putting on a brave face for them so as not to alarm them about the realities you’re facing. No one can do this alone. Reach out to your business friends, get some virtual co-working sessions going if you’re finding it hard working from home and make sure you’re using the EBA Facebook group to expand your support network.
There’s never been a better time to get serious about creating content in your equine business. With more people working from home & spending more time online, you have more eyeballs on your content. What sort of content should you be working on? You might have some things on your list you’ve been meaning to get round to – refreshing your website, writing those FAQs, recording how to or review videos, building an online course, writing that book or just getting a head start with your social media posts for the next few months.
If you get all three of these focus areas in place over the next few weeks, you’re well placed to #prospernotpanic and come out the other side of this outbreak with a business in better shape. The Equine Business Association is here to support you – don’t be shy about asking for help, we’re all in this together 🙂