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Mice Net : August 2009
preparing for economic recovery in the business events industry ARTIcLE PREPAREd fOR Meetings & events AustrAliA ConfliCting information about the state of the economy aside, we do need to prepare for when the upswing occurs. There are many ways that you can ready yourself and your organisation for return to business, and now is the time to do it. We need to be creative in our thinking. If you have down-time, this is the time to be creative. Use this time wisely by brainstorming with your employees on your company’s core business and business processes. Innovation is very important to your business and will make for your business success in the future Spend time with your customers, even the ones who cannot currently buy from you. Let them know that you value them and their business. Ask questions of them in regard to how you can improve your services to them in the future. Use this time to do a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis on your company, and look at ways of improvement. Start thinking about how you are going to create a financial foundation for future growth. Put all of your financial documentation in order in readiness. Ensure that you have a strategic plan in order. Make sure that you do have a game plan for when it is time to play again. Remember that a good strategic plan will cover off on tactics, techniques and of course the implementation. If you’re going to not only take on your opposition but beat them, you most certainly will need a strong strategy, and what better time to work on your strategy in readiness. Start thinking about the people in your organisation and the people you want to see on your recovery team. Evaluate all of your staff in readiness and if you do have doubts about anyone, use this downtime to train or replace, as let’s face it, there is a better quality of people looking for work currently, and you will have more choice. A word of warning: invest in your people. When that upturn arrives so will the war of talent. Our industry was in a skills shortage before the downturn, and we will be back there in no time, so invest in your people now. Help prepare them for the future challenges by providing them with training as well as developmental opportunities. Investing in your staff now will most certainly demonstrate a commitment from you that will stand you in good stead should your competition in the future try to poach them from you. Instil hope and confidence in your staff. As a leader this is your role. While times are currently tough, that does not mean you need to treat your staff toughly. Keep your organisation positive, don’t allow your staff to dwell on the negative. Ensure they see the positives. Look at T hink about it. Many of your company processes - those important areas you never seemed to be able to get to - could be improved in readiness for the upturn. ways that you can energise your staff. Maybe it’s time to invest in an inspirational speaker? Many companies will not make it through this economic downturn: it certainly is not an easy process. However, you cannot just sit back and wait for the upturn. Therefore, work on your company goals and objectives and plan for the good times ahead. If you do this you will not only have a better chance of sailing upwind and surviving the current storm, you will be ready for your next challenge. Visit starwoodmeetings.com for more information mice.net 27