Tips for small business owners looking to bounce back

This article was provided by Tyson Moore, President, Bank of America Nashville.

Nashville entrepreneurs prove time and again to be some of the most resilient and flexible in the business landscape. Bank of America’s 2020 Small Business Owner Report found entrepreneurs adapted their operations and found creative ways to reinvent themselves throughout the pandemic -- the most challenging time of their careers. More than four-in-five small businesses remained open in some capacity amid the pandemic, either as an essential business or by adjusting operations.

While it may be challenging to predict exactly what our path to economic recovery will look like, small businesses will play a significant role.

To support this vision, entrepreneurs can take three steps to reignite growth and plan for financial success.

Reevaluate your business plan given today’s environment. Due to changing landscapes and environments, it’s critical to evolve and adjust your business plan by mapping out key areas of need and growth and identifying any potential risk areas that you may have uncovered during the pandemic. What solutions worked best for your business as you managed the impact of the coronavirus? As we’re still in a time of uncertainty, ensure your plan allows room for evolution and adjustment as needed.

Explore your options. Our survey revealed that 42% of U.S. entrepreneurs applied for one or more loans to address the impact of the pandemic. As you build your business plan, look at your current financial picture and options that align with your operations and unique business needs that may have been impacted this year. With interest rates at historic lows, there might be some opportunities to consider. What goals have you identified in your business plan that may require additional financing? Are you looking to boost your headcount? Did you have expansion plans that you held off on? Are any structural or technological enhancements needed in the coming year? Once you identify your goals, sit down with your small business banker to determine the right financing solution for you.

Go digital. Businesses across the country have had to adjust aspects of their operations due to the public health crisis, including enhancing sanitation practices, changing primary revenue streams and shifting sales from brick-and-mortar to online. As we continue to adhere to social distancing requirements, consider banking digitally to limit in-person interactions and free up time to remain focused on running your business. Connect with your banker on what digital options are available to you. For example, at Bank of America we offer a full suite of small business digital capabilities, including Cash Flow Monitor, a no-cost dashboard that provides an easy way to manage, track and project your business cash flow.

The pandemic created unprecedented obstacles for small business owners, challenging them to find new and innovative ways to meet the needs of their businesses, employees, customers and communities. Following these steps can help business owners better position themselves to meet whatever opportunities and challenges the new year may bring.

Connect With the Chamber