As we blame too many things on this pandemic, clearly, in the middle of it will be our finances. This is because a lot of us are primitive money thinkers, we think of no other way of making money that working for it. Sadly, this season we really can’t go outside to make money in the ways our hustle has taught us. So let’s re-imagine our finance, decisions and trade offs. There are no worthy decisions without trade offs.
Beyond looking for just alternatives to generate more revenue, start from adjusting your balance sheet. Your expense can not be the same if your income has reduced. Have a budget. The truth is, too many people spend money they really don’t have, to buy things they really don’t need to impress people they don’t like, who don’t care too.
I suggest that you “Prioritize” your spending this season ( break them into utilities, essentials, short term versus long term, vitals and trivials). Depending on your social category, ( while for some it’s to pause on a capital project as mortgage and buildings, for others it’s to decide whether to turn off all auto updates on your mobile to conserve data, or what AC to turn on to conserve power or when to turn on the generator. IN whatever category you below to, Proper planning they say prevents poor performance. Stay off unnecessary subscriptions.
No Panic Buying
Stay off panic buying. It leads to high pricing and unnecessary waste. And in the words of M.W Harrison, “the waste of money cures itself, for soon there is no more waste”.
Stay off impulse buying. If you don’t define where your money is going, you’d end up wondering where it went.
Avoid living above your means at this time. Never spend money before you have it. Don’t do “audio money”.. it puts too much pressure on you.
No matter how things get bad, keep an emergency fund. With all your dependencies, the health crisis all around us and household hazards, you need it.
Move to reduce your account receivables ( debts). And also those you are owing you. As the saying goes, the only person who sticks to you closer than a friend in times of adversity are your creditors. Get personal with your creditors: sending an email won’t work. Call up the client. Meeting up the client face to face where possible and unannounced visits would help. Perfect timing is also key. Understand timing; send an email very early in the morning, so it’s the first thing they see when they wake up. If it’s either still early or late in the month, perfect time to send a subtle reminder.Offer conditioner discounts on loans ( say for example, discounts can be given to people who pay you on time or in this season).
Leverage on updated regulations from the macroeconomics bailouts ( some taxes may have been suspended that affects you). For exanple, Buhari has directed that a three-month repayment moratorium for all TraderMoni, MarketMoni and FarmerMoni loans be implemented with immediate effect.
It’s time to think beyond and ahead. An African proverb remind us that “whoever you give the power to feed you, you also give the power to starve you”. Most people have given too much power to daily hustle and employment.
The Covid-19 suddenly didnt drive u to stay indoors. It drove us to somewhere deeper, online. And it will never return us us back to exactly where we used to be. Upgrade now. Our lives has just changed!
There is crisis and panic. As the world become more anxious, beyond survival and being desperate and hungry for a solution to these deaths and pandemic, after all these what will emerge suddenly will be new opportunities for businesses. I predict new business models, new brands, a new league of power brokers and problem solvers. Will you be one?
Also, one other thing to quickly embrace now is to maybe have an extra income. The truth is that what we most have as JOBs just an acronym for being Just Over Broke. In other words, most people work just hard enough not to get fired. And get paid just enough not to quit. It’s a rat race.
Have other streams of income. Explore your passion, challenges around you as opportunities or even begin to monetize your expertise and experiences. For example, you can start to offer consulting in your field ( you’d be surprised how many people can pay for the knowledge you have and you take for granted), you can start to launch that out through blogging, a webinar, a free virtual event or even a podcast. You can write a book too . You can offer a free or discounted service in your neighbourhood at this time . E.g you can teach your kids neighbours how to play Chess, use the piano etc.
Stay positive, stay off too much news, stay hydrated, stay home, and exercise to reduce anxiety.
Strategy. Business Startup and Corporate Restructuring Consulting
Uwaoma Eizu is the lead strategist at Hexavia!
He is a graduate of Mathematics with two MBAs and over a decade of experience working with startups and big businesses. He is an entrepreneur and sits on a lot of boards too. His core is in building startups and in corporate restructuring. He is also a certified member of the Nigerian Institute of Management, Institute of Strategic Management of Nigeria and the Project Management Institute, USA. By the side, he writes weekly for the Business Day newspaper.