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Surviving the Recession in 2009

January 15, 2009

Small Businesses face challenges on many fronts, including lower consumer spending, rising unemployment and tightening credit. Inflation pressures have hit both businesses and customers. By acting quickly and decisively to protect your business today, your business can make it through the recession in a profitable position.

SCORE Lancaster offers a free business review and planning session.

The volunteer experts at SCORE have experience in a wide range of business areas, including: strategic planning; cash flow management; financial assessments; sales forecasting; sales pipeline planning; and business mentoring.

SCORE Lancaster Chairman Jerry Glenn says, “Small businesses feel the credit crunch first. We have seen difficulty accessing capital and collecting payments from customers.” Glenn adds, “Don’t wait. Now is the time to meet with a SCORE mentor to make plans to tighten credit policies, cut expenses and look at holding cash in your accounts. Experienced SCORE mentors are here to help you plan actions to survive the recession and grow when the economy turns around.”

SCORE Lancaster Offers Advice with Five Smart Strategies for Surviving the Recession in 2009:

Small Business Survival Tips

1. Don’t panic! Be calm and realistic as you review your business. Focus on the fundamentals and what you can control about your business. Look for new ways of doing business. Your competitors may be struggling too. Take steps to make sure your business survives.

2. Consult your mentors. Get feedback from informal advisors you trust. Ask SCORE for advice and meet to review the health of your business. Plan for a profitable year in 2009, even with potentially little or no growth.

3. Look for local funding. Contact your city, county or state governments when you seek capital. Sometimes there are programs with grants or loans in specific industries. Many economic development offices have programs for qualified small firms. Community banks also may be a source for a line of credit. A solid business plan can help you make your case.

4. Find ways to cut costs. Monitor cash flow weekly. Cut overhead and hold the line on price increases. Make sure you have good collection policies and diligently seek timely payment. Keep good records of your inventory and be careful not to overstock your shelves.

5. Continue your marketing. This is the time you need marketing the most. It reassures your customers that you are still there to serve them, and it can help you reach new markets to sustain your business. Visit your existing clients to find out how their needs may have changed. Adjust your product and service mix to meet changing demand.

For more information, call 717-392-3097 Visit SCORE Lancaster online at http://www.scorelancaster.org

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