How to Keep Your Business Afloat During a Recession

The hottest topic in the news right now is COVID-19 and the global effects of the pandemic. One of the major consequences of such an outbreak is the sudden downturn of the United States economy; we are potentially being thrown into recession, and there is very little we can do about it. The business world has practically come to a halt as people are encouraged to practice social distancing, and this could last for months depending on when we hit peak levels of infection.

So, amidst all the chaos, what can you do? Well, all you really can do is prepare for the worst and get your business ready to handle the shockwaves of a recession—and what better way to do so than by reflecting on lessons from the past?

Here are 7 lessons we learned from the Great Recession of 2008 that we can now use to our advantage:

  • Keep cash on hand. When the market is booming, it is tempting to invest all of your money into something that seems so promising. However, given recent events, we can see how quickly the economy can turn on its head. Many people will be unable to pay rent and several other bills, so you need enough cash on hand to last your business at least several months. If you do not have that much available, do whatever you can to make up for it.
  • Fight or flight. If you have taken a basic psychology course, you know what fight-or-flight instincts are. If you do not know, “fight or flight” refers to a physiological response to any sort of threat or attack. In the world of real estate during a recession, use these instincts to your advantage. Stay alert to any challenges you may face, and decide early on whether you want to tackle them head-on or avoid them at all costs.
  • No time for slackers. Everybody deserves a break every once in a while. Do you really want to take that break on the brink of a recession? While everybody else is busy panicking and gawking at the news, you can get ahead of the curve by hustling hard. This gives you a major advantage and will put you one, two, three, four, five steps ahead of your competition.
  • Maintain relationships. One of the most important lessons that spans across all realms of business is to acquire and maintain strong, trusting relationships. You never know when you are going to need help, whether it is in the form of a product, a service, or even a loan. You want people on whom you can depend, and you want those same people to have enough faith in you to lend a hand.
  • Be adaptable. Life does not usually go as planned, and it is for this reason that you need to be ready to adapt to any changes in your situation. Do your research and use the resources you have at your disposal to manage any unexpected issues. In many cases, you will have to be creative and innovate—that is where your entrepreneurial spirit needs to come in.
  • Diversify your portfolio. If there is a golden rule of investing, this should be it, and it applies across all types of investments—including the real estate industry. If possible, you should try to change up the real estate in which you invest, whether it is by type, geographical location, or some other characteristic. Different kinds are more affected than others by recessions and other events, so this lowers the probability that all of your investments will be negatively impacted.
  • Stay optimistic. We know this is hard to do, but you have to remember that a recession is part of the business cycle. The economy is reaching a trough, but eventually, it will be on the upswing again and expanding just as we saw earlier this year. Do not give up or slow down just because you might not see any immediate results; when the economy is booming again, and your business is as well, you will be thankful that you worked as hard as you did.

These are hard, scary times, but that does not mean that your world should come to a stop. New challenges will arise in 2020 that nobody has seen before, and the best thing you can do is take all the necessary precautions to prepare your business for the worst. Even if, by some miracle, the coronavirus pandemic does not send us into a deep recession, there will always be a recession somewhere in the future—make sure that you and your team are ready.

If you need help figuring out how to work from home productively during this pandemic, check out this blog with the best tools and tips.

Gita Faust

About the Author

Gita Faust has over 30 years of accounting experience in the real estate and property management industry, Gita Faust is more than just a real estate investor; she is also popular for her work as an accountant, consultant, mentor, speaker, QuickBooks Top ProAdvisor, QuickBooks Solution Provider, member of Intuit’s Trainer/Writer Network, and, of course, author. Gita is well-known for her exemplary leadership and advisory skills. In fact, she even helped pioneer the adaptation of QuickBooks to suit the needs of professionals in real estate and property management. To share her knowledge she has written a series of courses titled Simplified Accounting Solution, which provides step-by-step guidance for those working with QuickBooks.

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