Whenever I feel a little stuck and stressed about what to do during a stressful business situation, I find thinking more about it doesn’t help.
One way to break through the stressful barrier is to take action – and any action is better than no action.
Financial Stress: If you have clients that are slow to pay you, drive directly to their place of business and ask them, ‘how’s it going?’ Ask them if they’ve had any issues with the product or service delivery. Ask them if they remember the payments terms they agreed to. Then ask them to pay your bill!
Sales Stress: Create a new promotion. It doesn’t matter how crazy it is, just do it. This action is a conversation starter with customers and salespeople at the very least. I have many retail clients who tried one of those crazy ideas and they actually worked!
Sales Stress #2: Make a list of your top 10 customers. Call them or go see them. Ask them how things are going. ‘Are we doing a good job for you? Is there any unmet need we may be able to assist with?’ Even if they are doing fine, ask them if they would consider providing a referral for you.
People Stress: If your employees are having productivity problems, jump in right beside them and help them do their job. Jump in the truck with the drivers, pull up a chair at the desk or join them on the worksite. Get out there and shake things up a bit and see what you learn. Any time I have offered to pull up a chair at the desk beside an employee, they often decide to focus more on their own!
Time management stress: Look down your ‘to-do list’ and pick two things you know you aren’t going to do – and just cross them off. Forget them or delegate them. Next, choose two things that will take 5 minutes or less to complete – and do those. After 10 minutes with four things crossed off, you will feel so great, you can now tackle the worst job that you have been circling around and stressing about for weeks!
The key to dealing with business stress
The key in all the above examples is to do something – anything.
Once you are taking the actions, the idea for the next actions will come to you.
The more action you take, the lower the anxiety. Next thing you know, the stress is gone!