Turnaround management for beginners
Turnaround processes may succeed or not. Actually, chances to fail are predominant. But the important thing is that turnaround is a different approach of business management. Another skillset is required, but in general, especially in small companies, no one can replace the pilot in command when trouble is near. Here are a few hints for the manager who has to conduct such an operation.
Cut them off, put them into a plastic bag and stick it in the inner pocket of your bad-weather jacket. Maybe you will have a few seconds to read them in the middle of your journey.
- Be convinced that you will succeed. So you can start convincing the other ones.
- Don’t just think short-term, think immediate ! Be prepared to start every morning with unplanned emergencies.
- Try to secure your staff. Radically change the communication way. In the beginning of trouble, communication usually tends to become scarce and unspecific. Make it opened and spontaneous.
- Tell your whole staff the truth, show them all of the actual numbers. Don’t worry about the competition learning them. Anyway, they are inventing even worse about you.
- Tell everybody they can leave the company if they have the chance. The ones you can really rely on will stay.
- Don’t implement immediate changes just in order to display change. In a troubled business, external people usually have come in the recent years and tried various changes. The staff won’t see value in it.
- Set short-term objectives, that can be achieved or not within weeks.
- Away with academic rules. Aerodynamic science is of no use in a falling plane.
- Enforce reduction of expenses at every level of the company, with no exception. All salaries are frozen. You must show the example, i.e. you travel only for critical reasons, in the lowest possible class.
- Don’t speak about strategy. Keep it for yourself. You will start communicating this when you start to see the light of recovery.
- Announce (and plan) some rewards after 6 months, e.g. a fixed premium if the business holds until then.
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