How To Operate A Successful Business During Challenging Times

By Octavia Conner

It can be difficult to operate a business during challenging times. Would you agree? Challenging times could be a slow season, an economic crisis, or an industry crash, such as what happened in the real estate market. And, while challenging times can place a lot of pressure on the company's cash flow and sustainability, it is not impossible to succeed during these periods of business.

Let me say that again – It may be challenging, BUT it is NOT impossible to succeed. With a few strategic adjustments, you can find yourself thriving when you thought all hope was lost.

In this article, I am going to show you how to shift the financial position of your company from barely surviving to financially thriving.

Building a business is a marathon. Therefore, this journey is long, and it can sometimes be challenging. One of the most important things you can do as the CEO is to revisit or redefine your WHY. WHY did you start your business? There is power in knowing what pulled you and pushed you to hang out that open for business sign. Ask yourself – What do I love most about what I do.

You need to rekindle the passion that propelled you to start the business in the first place. Your WHY should invoke such emotions that it can bring you to tears or at least make you get your butt out of bed! You need to then share your why with your staff, your friends and family, even the world.

My Why? I'm glad you asked. I want to prevent the struggle of entrepreneurship and help businesses have more money than they even know what to do with it. I was once broke, busted, and totally disgusted. During this challenging time in my business, I took a step back and developed strategies that enabled me to experience a financial breakthrough.

When I experienced my financial breakthrough, I said two things 1) I'll never go through that again, and 2) I have to help others build wealth due to their business success. I want to be the person behind-the-scenes, helping millions of CEOs keep their finances in order and build million-dollar enterprises. Yesssss! So, when times are hard, I remember WHY I launched Say Yes To Profits in the first place… And that is what keeps me going.

Now I want you to revisit or re-brand your Why and leave it in the comments below.

Get Your Money in Order – You need to take a hard look at the three money levels of your business: the revenue, cash flow, and profit.

When examining the revenue level, identify the number of service and product lines you currently have. Also, determine if each service/product is you priced for profit. Then, identify the most profitable lines versus the least profitable. Listen, there is power in knowing just this information!

Next review your cash flow – Where should you cut cost? Is your company in debt? Where are you spending money, but it is not serving you?

I recommend that you calculate how much cash you will need to thrive over the next 3 to 6 months. Then capitalize on your most profitable service or product. Next, identify where you need to pivot in your business to have more money entering and less money going out.

When reviewing your revenue and cash flow levels, you always want to operate below your means, predict the company's cash position in advance, and get out of debt. PERIOD!

The last step is to focus on generating more profit. There are only four ways to maximize profit in business:

1) Increase your customer volume,

2) Increase the number of times a customer buys from you,

3) Increase the price

4) Reduce cost.

Based on the four profit drivers above, where do you need to make changes that will add more money to your bottom line?

For example, could you now offer a special that will increase the sales volume of your top product line? Or perhaps, you can turn a one-time service offer into a recurring service. Maybe you can incentivize current customers in a way that will encourage them to refer new customers. You have to get creative and think about money, money, money.

I recently saw a post online that stated that Madam C.J. Walker became a millionaire during a recession. And if she can do it, you can do it too!

The bottom line is that you need to adjust the emotional and financial operations of your business strategically.

You need to make sure that everything you do aligns with your WHY, and you always have more money ENTERING then exiting.

Do you have any questions about how to determine your why and the three money levels or how a business can operate successfully during challenging times? If so, leave your questions or comments below.

Octavia Conner Virtual CFO

About Octavia Conner

As the CEO of Say Yes To Profits, a virtual accounting firm, Octavia Conner is an award-winning financial strategist that specializes in helping businesses grow between 30% and 350% within 12-months while saving over 55% in taxes. For more information, visit

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