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CRISIS: How to Prepare for an Economic Recession

CRISIS: While we typically think of American commerce as an environment of bountiful wealth and opportunity, history has shown that economic downturns can occur at even the most prosperous of times. Economists have already sounded the alarm for the approaching 2023 recession.

As a small business owner, it's important to be prepared for any potential economic downturns. While it's impossible to predict exactly when a recession will occur, there are steps you can take to financially prepare your business in case of an economic recession.

  1. Create a financial safety net:
    It's important to have a reserve of cash on hand in case of an unexpected downturn in business. This could include setting aside a percentage of your profits each month or building up a line of credit. This safety net can help your business weather any temporary slowdowns in business.
  2. Diversify your income streams:
    Don't rely on just one source of income for your business. Consider diversifying your revenue streams to include multiple sources of income, such as offering new products or services, partnering with other businesses, or finding new customers. Our helpful guide on unique sources of funding may also further inform your perspectives on how to diversify revenue streams and use various other resources for funding. This can help cushion the blow if one source of income dries up during a recession.
  3. Cut unnecessary expenses:
    Take a close look at your business expenses and see if there are any unnecessary expenses you can cut. This could include things like expensive office space, unnecessary software subscriptions, or non-essential employee benefits. By cutting unnecessary expenses, you can free up cash to help sustain your business during a recession.
  4. Negotiate with suppliers and landlords:
    If you're struggling to make ends meet during a recession, it's worth negotiating with your suppliers and landlords to see if you can get better terms. This could include longer payment terms, lower prices, or even a temporary reduction in rent.
  5. Seek out government assistance:
    If your business is struggling during a recession, there may be government assistance programs available to help. This could include things like grants, loans, or tax breaks. Do some research to see what assistance programs are available in your area.
  6. Communicate with your customers:
    Keep your customers in the loop about any changes to your business during a recession. If you need to temporarily close your doors or change your operating hours, make sure to communicate this to your customers. This can help build trust and ensure that your customers continue to support your business during difficult times.

By following these steps, you can financially prepare your small business for an economic recession. While it may not be possible to completely avoid the impacts of a recession, by being proactive and taking steps to protect your business, you can increase your chances of weathering the proverbial storm of economic hardship, and endure the challenges faced as the result of economic instability.

Felix A. Woelber Felix is an Alaskan born author, academic researcher, multi-media artist, and former educator. They enjoy writing about socio-economics, public policy, and creating education resources.
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