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Setbacks are just learning experiences: 5 ways to recover and march forward

Sonal Mishra
16th Mar 2017
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Setbacks are inevitable, especially in the world of business. Even the most astute planners and entrepreneurs have to face their own challenges while running a business. But the important thing is how you recover from these setbacks efficiently and effectively.

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There are stories of various companies and corporations that have come back after major business downturns. According to Anne Houlihan, President of Satori Seal, California, what you need to make sure is that you understand the root cause of the problem and then determine whether it is something that you can fix on your end or not.

Create a crisis team

You need to create a team of people that is specifically going to address this issue. The team should comprise of your key executives along with others, says Lisa M Poulin, President of the Turnaround Management Association. Experts claim that it is crucial for ecommerce companies to hire people who understand virtual reality, know how to work with numbers, and are capable of applying internet tricks to industries.

As an entrepreneur, if it is becoming difficult for you to come up with a competent enough team from inside your company, then you need to turn to your personal sources for unbiased guidance or you may need to take professional help. This will help you determine the root cause of the problem.

Re-evaluate your strategy

Desperate times call for desperate measures. In order to realise what went wrong, evaluating and re-evaluating your previous strategies is a must. Thoroughly go through the numbers, charts, and all kinds of analytic tools that you can get your hands on. Learn why the setback occurred, where it began, and how it led to the setback. It is very important to find the gaps in the system so you are fully equipped next time around. It has been recognised that no singular event can cause major setbacks. Rather, it is a series of events that forces the corporation to take major steps. So tighten your current procedures and set up any safeguards if required. Upgrade your business strategies. Keep the ones that worked in your favour and toss the others out of the system

Ensure customer satisfaction

According to research, for every unsatisfied customer that makes a complaint, there are 26 other unsatisfied customers who do not. To provide more value and utility to your existing as well as potential customers you must spend time and effort to analyse their purchasing habits to learn about their other preferences.

For example, if you know consumers prefer email interaction over telemarketing, your team should create personalised email marketing strategies to promote new offers, deals, and discounts.

If the customer value you provide is greater than that of your competitors, your consumers will be appreciative and your ecommerce company will automatically reap the benefits. For instance, delivery and logistics have always been one of the key challenges of e-commerce companies, and for quite a long time, customers have faced the consequences of this gap. Flipkart’s express delivery and Amazon’s Prime could be seen as an initiative to fill this gap and provide customers with the best in class experience. Today, most e-commerce giants, including Myntra, ensure fast delivery of products, even during major shopping events.

Manage your stress levels

“You don’t judge a man by the times he gets knocked down but by the number of times he gets up.”

As an entrepreneur, you need to manage your stress levels and recognise that business setbacks are usually temporary. Fixing the problem and recovering from the disaster effectively will require a lot of your effort and clarity. Being stressful makes it extremely difficult and could possibly trigger various other health problems. The best way to manage stress is to keep your body active and mind focused.

Seek out growth

It may seem like an unusual option, but setbacks provide a perfect time to seek growth opportunities. Anne Houlihan says that in the tough economic times of 2009, her company was down by 35 percent. They focused on what industries were busy during these times. The automotive industry of which she is a part of was dying but the medical industry was thriving. So they targeted it. After Hurricane Katrina struck, their company benefitted from relationships with clients in the housing business. This served as a clear example of benefits of seeking growth during a setback.

Growth is a never ending process and facing setbacks is unavoidable. Move past your setbacks and learn from each of them. You may need to make certain sacrifices, but every time you emerge, you should be more powerful, more resistant and striving for more success than ever before.

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