Right about now, it’s easy to feel things are beyond your control as the owner of a business. After all. Covid-19 has brought us an extended period of uncertainty capped off by an announcement that Australia is entering a recession.

That may have you questioning the influence you have over your business and looking at new ways to embrace effective decision making. It may also see you weighing the needs of your staff against personal needs or those of your business.

All of this begs the question who’s the boss? And how can you go about demonstrating leadership in challenging circumstances?

The big picture

As the business owner, you and only you, are privy to the full picture. You know your business strengths and weaknesses, you know the bottom line, and you know where you need to go.

This big picture perspective should be underpinned by a solid plan, allowing you to guide your enterprise and your staff into the future.

Think before you speak

As the boss, you can pretty much say and do as you wish, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should. Right now, your staff are looking for certainty and transparency from a leader with a thought-out plan in place.

You don’t need all the answers immediately, but when you have them you should include your staff in the discussion.

Engage your staff

On that note, your staff have a vested interest in the long-term success of your business. And if engagement and enthusiasm are not apparent, they may not be the staff you need.

Now is the time to engage interested staff in a discussion about your business and where you hope to go, allowing them to take ownership of ideas that can help propel you forward.

That doesn’t mean you will necessarily embrace every idea they put forward, but at least liaise with them to better understand the issues they face at the coalface of the business and what can be improved.

Get back to basics

Over recent weeks, I’ve talked about this at length but the events of 2020 should see every business operator getting back to basics in terms of SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats analysis), business planning, goal setting, competition analysis, and future projections.

The stark reality is…the playing field has shifted in recent months, which means you need to strip your business back and get down to business basics, which includes: re-engaging your customer, providing unparalleled customer service and re-examining your bottom line.

Walk the talk

It’s easy for leaders to talk the talk, fault things when outcomes are not delivered and delegate the tough jobs, but can you walk the talk? At this moment staff are looking for visionary leaders who aren’t just about words, but lead by example.

They want to see their boss is prepared to tough it out in the trenches with them by offering the assistance that’s required.

That doesn’t mean you should micromanage your staff or take on everything, but rather illustrate you’re prepared to get stuck in and get your hands dirty for the benefit of all.

If you’re looking to take a fresh perspective of your business, including examining the big picture, your goals and our business plan, I’m available to assist.

You can follow the business journey at my Business Conversations podcast or reach out directly to me here.