Balancing Short-Term Crisis Management with the Mid and Longer-Term

Recessions reorder the market and competitive landscape; ensure you earn the place you want.

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A recession post-COVID is a likely enough scenario that it must be planned for. There are already projects being canceled and design professionals are seeing a drop in demand.  

Leadership Tools for COVID-19: Balancing Short-Term Crisis Management with the Mid and Longer Term.

Look at the last recession. US Construction Employment plotted against your company’s performance in both revenue and profitability. While the average fell 28% from a peak in 2007 to a low in 2010, most companies weren’t average. Most were falling into one of four broad categories:  

  1. Well-positioned from a market strategy and operations standpoint and kept growing.  
  2. Reacted effectively and mitigated the downside while accelerating in the recovery.
  3. Followed the economy down and never recovered, struggling through consistent declines.  
  4. Sadly, many contractors failed or decided to close during this time.

Some contractors were a combination. For instance, acting very aggressively in the beginning to shed business and capacity, focused in the wrong markets, dropping faster than the market in 2008-2009 but emerging and dominating their markets by 2012 and beyond.

Recessions reorder the market and competitive landscape; ensure you earn the place you want.    

  • What market sectors and businesses will most likely grow?
  • Which will most likely decline faster than the overall economy or take much longer to recover?
  • Rank your backlog and pipeline.
  • Stress test your finances and operations to find vulnerabilities.  
  • What must you do today in order to be well-positioned for this future state?  

We learned a lot of lessons with our clients during the last recession. Everyone on our team has navigated multiple recessions. Unbiased and experienced third-party facilitation is very effective when planning for the unknowns, including the many tough choices that must be made quickly. 

Please contact us if you would like to talk through some of the effective strategies and tactics.  


COVID-19 Leadership Tools for Contractors
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COVID-19 Leadership Tools for Contractors
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Effectively execute your strategies across the whole organization while allowing your team the flexibility to adapt for the specific conditions they are facing.
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Slow is smooth and smooth is fast. This advice is invaluable when leading a team through a crisis. Calm and deliberate action is what's required, often from incomplete and conflicting information.
Prepare Your Business - People
Your people are your business. This is especially true for contractors where nearly 100% of competitive differentiators are the experience of your people. Now we are faced with lots of unknowns and yet we must act decisively.