C-Suite Network™

Don’t Ponder or Squander: You Have To Be In It To Win It


“I cannot believe you’re pushing drive and thrive. Now is not the time.”


A fellow “thought leader” said this to me. Their advice? The best thing we can do during this moment of crisis is to sit it out and wait for things to get better. My question is, when is the time then? My answer remains, the time is now!


When you ponder, you squander and I don’t think any of us has the time to wait for calmer waters. By then, your business has capsized and you’re left picking up the pieces.


I am a firm believer that the next few months will be critical for the survival of any business, especially during a potential economic downturn. I have been incredibly busy doing a multitude of webinars with partners, clients, and members and they have heard me mention my 5 keeps:


  1. Keep your customers engaged
  2. Keep your employees focused
  3. Keep the cash flowing
  4. Keep continuity
  5. Keep your spirit


How does one keep customers engaged? First and foremost, don’t panic! I know it’s easier said than done, but we must keep a cool head. We’re practicing what we’re preaching and we are holding regular events and “huddles” with C-Suite Network members and anyone who wants to come in to listen. We listen to the problems people are facing, we create connections with those than can help right now and even provide some with answers and resources that will take care of them for the foreseeable future.


Cash is king. Money makes the world go ‘round and without it, we can’t accomplish much. Changes have to be made. The Small Business Association recommends forecasting your cash flow to ensure monthly expenditures are aligned with your accounts receivable. Take stock of your expenses – if there’s something you can cut, start there. Whether it’s a more cost-effective software, tools, and other necessities, look to reduce those. Assess the situation at every turn. Some choices will be more difficult, but be transparent with everyone – employees, vendors, stakeholders, and customers. That is key!


The “drive and thrive” initiative is something I strongly believe we should continue pushing. I could not be more excited, motivated, and supportive of the work we are putting in place to help as many people as possible through the next sixty days. It’s essential that we, as business leaders, act as ‘business first responders.’ We have a responsibility to our community, our employees, and everyone around us to bring as much ‘normalcy’ as possible during a time that will test many of us.


There’s a fire blazing through the businesses of America that is challenging the very foundation of our corporations and demands the best response efforts from the country’s greatest business leaders. The COVID-19 crisis has crippled business and left many in a bad place. According to the NFIB Research Center, 76 percent of small businesses are negatively impacted by this global pandemic, while only 5 percent are positively impacted.


I speak from experience as action is in my nature and it is the same for most successful business leaders. That’s why I’m emphatic about the ‘Drive and Thrive’ initiative. Don’t get me wrong, that phrase doesn’t mean go out and prospect. You would have to be an insensitive jerk to be aggressively selling right now. However, experience tells me that we should be spending every waking moment moving our businesses forward, pivoting and getting creative in order to keep everyone engaged.


The hundreds of thousands of people we serve and the millions of people we reach with our articles, podcasts, and TV shows are grateful to have trusted advisors, valued thought leaders, and professionals to help provide information, resources, advice, leadership, and direction. They appreciate leaders with a “get to work” attitude. They lead and represent millions of people who are employed and count on paychecks or have suppliers and partners who have contracts and customers who need products and services. These people are part of the fabric that weaves in a semblance of business continuity and an economy that depends on them to keep it going.


‘Drive and thrive’ is for every business to get moving because if you snooze, you lose!  It’s that simple. Business First Responders motivate and inspire — they have vast domains of knowledge and experience to share.


We need to move, the country needs to move. There will be detractors that say, “oh, it’s just too soon.” NO! Exactly the opposite! Run as fast as you can to coach, advise, and support businesses – and not just current businesses either. Create a “wish list” of people who you always wanted to reach out and put yourself on their radar.


There are millions being laid off and more to come, organizations and communities that may be devastated. And worse, there will continue to be lives on the line. I’m not a healthcare professional, but I can do something about it – through business.


I will do it as big, as bad, and as best I can.


I have never worked harder and I will gladly continue to do so if it means I keep people employed and I’m helping the overall business community and the national economy.

So, no. I will not wait. I’ll rush in and take care of business. To the detractors I’ll say

go kick rocks. Talk to your friends about missed lunches or how you will not make your premium airline status, because while you wait, I and many others will do our part to make a difference.


‘Drive and thrive’ is not about selling or prospecting business. It’s all about helping, empowering, and motivating. As a leader, it’s about educating, engaging, exciting and inspiring others to succeed every day. It’s a choice I make every single day and encourage others to do the same.


In the face of this looming crisis and economic hardship, the world needs Business First Responders. Stand tall, center your mind, body and spirit, and prepare for battle. Businesses across the globe are looking for leaders; those who will run into the flames, those who will ‘drive and thrive.’


Remember, the future may seem bleak, but not everything is dark. Throughout history, some of the biggest companies emerged from the throes of a recession – from Airbnb, to Uber, to General Electric, General Motors, and even Disney.


Right now, business needs to push, not pause.

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