Small Business Administration Chief Jovita Carranza tweeted on Friday afternoon that 12,461 crisis response loans were already approved totaling more almost $4 Billion. The problem is, none of the nationwide network of small business accountants I am connected with online knows any small business that has been approved yet. While the aid package was supposed to be for small businesses with less than 500 employees, already there are reports of large corporations being approved for grants based on exceptions in the law. The conclusion might be that large corporations were helped first on the aid program. The reality is that virtually all small businesses are sweating and worried about maintaining the cash flow necessary to survive.
I’ve repeated a number of times that if government assistance with the cash crunch is coming for ordinary small businesses, it will likely come as part of a still unwritten 4th federal pandemic response package that will be considered in coming months. This is all speculative, so certainly not something that we can rely on in our business planning. What this means, I think, is that many small businesses are facing long term economic depression conditions for the foreseeable future. But what can we do about it now, on our own, and without waiting for questionable government funding? That’s the key question that demands our focus.
For now, there is so much evolving information, misinformation and discussion lacking real substance that it makes our job as small business advisers very difficult. I am critical of advice based primarily on what the new laws say. We (small business advisers with crisis management experience) know that the experience of the average small business is very much different than what the relief legislation says. Instead, I am focused on helping small business clients reinvent themselves in a way that allows them to flourish in a post-pandemic permanently changed market environment. That internal focus on transformation is the key to our survival as small businesses.
Yes, it is difficult to focus on strategic business planning and transformation in the midst of suffering and crisis all around us. We all get that. But those who do, those business owners who are able to make meaningful changes to their core business model, will come out ahead incoming months.
I’d love to hear about the changes you are making and the challenges you are facing in making this lifesaving transformation for your business. Please respond with a message or let’s plan a few minutes to talk.