Have you heard? We're slowly moving out of the worst financial crisis many of us have ever experienced toward an optimistic time of recovery and eventual growth.
As a small business owner, this is the time you've been waiting for. Now it's time to position you and your business for post-recession success by doing these seven things:
1. Invest in education
Without spending too much, invest now in any education you need to make your post-recession business a success. Attend seminars online and in person, read books and trade magazines, and make sure you're reading what's on the cutting edge in your industry.
2. Pay off debt
If you can pay off any debt, now is the time to do it. Taking on debt during a recession is common; however, now that the recession is lifting, don't add to it. Pay cash for everything you need. Put your credit cards in the freezer.
3. Go "Zen" on extras
Now that money may be flowing a little more, resist the urge to splurge on extras you don't need. Think before you add all the bells and whistles to your business or cell phone. Think before you buy new technology. Do you really need that Starbucks' latte twice a day?
4. Follow the market
Read the papers or watch the news. Know what is happening and stay on top of it.
5. Renew contracts
Have your new clients sign a long-term contract and your current clients renew or extend their contracts with you.
6. Hang on to your property
While it may seem like a good time to sell your home or business property, don't. At this moment in time, you won't get top dollar and may still end up losing money. Instead, begin projects that will improve the quality (and eventual selling price) of your home or office
7. Don't cut prices
Right after a recession, it is common for small business owners to think that cutting prices will help them attract more clients and customers. Don't do it. Keep your prices steady, while offering your customers a coupon or a rewards program, to reward them for sticking with you during tough times.
These are exciting times we live in. Finally, we're seeing evidence that the U.S. economy is starting to recover. Now is the time for small business owners to jump to action. Don't wait.