For anyone growing a mission, a recession is a time of challenge and opportunity. If you can proactively build resilience, you can come out stronger than ever before. Here’s how:
Back to the vision.
The first step to recession resilience is to focus on your mission and vision. At Flourish, we always say it is the true “north star” of everything.
Based on your mission and vision, you should have a clear idea of the brand and business goals that are important for your organization. If you don’t have these goals defined yet, now is the time!
If you do have these goals defined, revisit them with a scenario lens. Many organizations set out 3-5 year strategic plans. Our best laid plans can be a foundation, however, we need to revisit them with clear scenario-planning strategies.
This is the time to gather the team and proactively plan for the future. Create a plan with multiple options based on various scenarios that may arise over time (e.g., if giving decreases by 20%, I’ll take action X). Again, any of your strategies should always point back to the mission and vision; this season may be a good time to trim any unnecessary programs, services, or activities and focus on core-mission activities.
Finally, communicate these adapted, resilience plans clearly so everyone knows what they need to do in order to achieve success together.
Relationships. Relationships. Relationships.
Relationships are the foundation of your business, your brand, and your life. It takes time and effort to build relationships that matter. In order to survive in any economy, you need relationships with your Brand Connectors where there is mutual trust.
If you haven’t already, outline your Brand Connectors and ensure you understand their needs, challenges, and goals. And understand how those will shift when the economy shifts.
I can’t stress this enough — when (not if) times get tough, your investment in nurturing relationships will pay off. Hone in those key relationships, and
Consistency is key.
So, how do you nurture relationships? Relationships take time, energy, and effort to maintain. Communicating consistently is key. Consistency builds trust.
If I haven’t heard from you in several months, and then you pop over and ask “Hey, can you donate $100?” out of the blue … best-case scenario, I say ignore it, and worst case scenario, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth because it feels like a transactional ask. (Sadly, this happens too often IRL!)
Consistent communication rhythms is often the Achilles heel of mission-driven organizations that have one million other activities going on. But resilient leaders know communication an important investment and an integral part of the mission itself.
Making your brand recession resilient doesn’t happen overnight. By proactively evaluating these three areas: your vision, relationships, and consistency, you will be better prepared for whatever comes your way.
If you’re looking for an expert to help guide you to a brand plan of action, we’re here to help. Our strategy sessions help you clarify and build a sustainable plan of action for you and your brand.