You have the ability to be flexible, serve customers, and give them value if your head is not spinning during a crisis. Without fear, you can be a great leader in business, to your clients, and family. You can guide them through the storm that is happening right now.
What are your contingency plan and thought processes so that the crisis will not affect your business in the future?
In this episode of Freedom In Five Minutes Podcast, you will learn how I am able to spend more time with family during this crisis while my business thrives. This is all possible by taking steps to diversify and safeguard your business.
Overview & Episode Content
- What are The Perks of Having Security Clearance?
- Growing Into a More Technical Position in the Business
- What is the Continuity of Operations in Your Business?
- Set Your Business on the Course to be Remote-Based
- Remote-Based Business Solutions have Been Around for a Long Time
What are The Perks of Having Security Clearance?
And I thought, “Okay! I am going to figure this thing out,” and that was how I got involved with that company.
It was 2003 when I met her. I had a couple of credits in college on a ten-year plan, pretty much at that point. The fact was that I really did not know what I wanted to do.
It was a good thing that I joined the United States Army Reserves as an intel analyst. Because of that, I got top-secret security clearance as an intel analyst.
There is one thing you have to remember, just because a person has a top-secret security clearance, does not mean they have access to everything. What it does allow is better opportunities in big aerospace companies.
When these companies hire someone with security clearance, that person will have to sit at a desk, not able to do anything for the first few months and the company has to pay for the security clearance itself. So, that becomes pretty valuable.
It was almost better than having a degree — in my case, it definitely was.
Growing Into a More Technical Position in the Business
I was working for a place called DMJM Plus Harris when I started trying to figure out ways to make more money and get my college degree. DMJM Plus Harris was a civil engineering company that I was working for when I started applying at all these different companies.
One of those companies I sent my application to was a large international aerospace company.
And on the application, I said something like, “Hey I am going for my bachelor’s degree in business.”
The fact that they saw my security clearance and add the fact that I wanted to go for my bachelor’s degree was enough for them to accept my application. And so, they ended up hiring me as an industrial security specialist.
For those who do not know, an industrial security specialist is in charge of all the government regulations for top-secret facilities. This person has to make sure that these big companies are following all of the regulations.
It was a very niched thing and definitely something that I was not expecting to do. While I was working there, I ended up becoming a computer security specialist later on. That position was a more technical version of my initial job.
This was about halfway into my ten years — about 5 years — is when I went into the more technical side.
What is the Continuity of Operations in Your Business?
One of the things that really interested me was the concept of continuity planning of the project, the company, and the program we are supporting.
The continuity of operations is the kind of contingencies that are in place in the organization — be it technically, administratively, or personnel-wise — it is a whole bunch of factors to consider when disaster happens.
These disasters could be a natural disaster or a man-made disaster. No matter the cause, the question to consider is, “What kind of contingency do you have in place?”
I was not a big nerd that was totally all up in the technicalities when it came to keeping an organization going. However, I was and still am, interested in the high-level ideas and the structure of setting up an organization so that when a disaster strikes, the business is still able to keep moving.
So, are we in a disaster right now? Yes.
Our people and companies are freaking out in their particular positions right now. Companies are highly interested in the continuity of operations right now.
When I was still employed at the aerospace company, what do you think they thought of when it came to the continuity of operations? Everything was doing great and doing fine. So, they were treating everything as an expense that they can worry about later.
Guess what? That was exactly the way for almost every company. “Let us just make money now and we can worry about all that stuff later. Because that is really just an expense right now.”
Set Your Business on the Course to be Remote-Based
What do you think is happening to those companies without contingency plans as we speak? They are closing their doors, closing their businesses in general, trying to figure out how to work remotely, and trying to figure out how to create continuity in their business or save their lives right now.
The thing is, a lot of these solutions do not have to be difficult!
If you have been listening to this podcast for a while, then you know that the one thing we always talk about is how to automate your business in five minutes a day — or less.
You might be thinking, “Dean, their organization is really complicated and complex. There is a lot that goes into their stuff.”
The technical input of their stuff can be complex, yes. However, the strategy and the thought process of continuity, the planning of operations, is not difficult.
I honestly get tired of people who make things more difficult than they already are. Despite the fact that we have had the ability to implement these solutions for two decades now, everyone today is trying to figure out how to create a remote-based set up for employees. If you are able to do that during this crisis, then you could have done it beforehand.
All you had to do was plan it out, “As this business goes forward, we will figure out how to do things remotely. As time goes on, we will spend time to figure out what works and what does not.”
It is not something that is hard to think about and it sets your business on the course to start working remotely. Now, people are thinking about how to reduce fixed costs of where they do business.
Remote-Based Business Solutions have Been Around for a Long Time
The shared workspace concept has been around for a long time. Another thing that has been around for quite a bit is the ghost kitchen. Guess which ones are doing really well in the food industry right now? Those who have taken up ghost kitchens — restaurants who subscribe to ghost kitchens and have their food delivered or catered.
Now, businesses are wondering how to outsource overseas and reduce the costs of labor. Here in the U.S., rates are as high as $15.00 per hour for entry-level people. Outsourcing has been around for over a decade on a large-scale!
But if these simple questions were asked on a regular basis and in the minds of thought leaders within the business, guess what would have happened over time? All of this stuff would have been implemented long ago.
Those who thrive right now are those who outsource, those who work remotely, those who have figured out and reduced their fixed costs, those who have set up remote capabilities for their businesses.
Today, businesses are wondering, “How do I create standard operating procedures so everyone in my business knows what to do? I had to lay off half of my people and now, the people that remained have no idea what to do. They were the higher-ups who never had to do these tactical things in a long time.”
Businesses who thought about this stuff and started implementing over time are the ones who are thriving right now. Thought becomes action.
For me, I will be looking to buy some businesses that were retarded during this tough time. And turn them around, flip them, or keep them as a cash flow investment.
The thing is, despite these contingencies as being “costs”, and not sounding sexy, I have spent more time with family during this crisis, I have the ability to serve my customers, be flexible, and give them value.
In fact, right after this recording, I have a strategy call with one of my customers about their next moves during this time. Some customers needed financial help, some customers needed other types of help.
Because my head is not spinning and I'm not scared, I can be a good leader to my clients and family and guide them through this storm that is currently happening.
Now that you are in this storm, what are the things that you are going to constantly have as your mission and thought process so that this stuff does not affect your business in the future?
I want you to start planning. Write it down, it is very simple. And then, use those as your guidepost, use them as your north star for the future that is going to be a brand new world up ahead.
Contingency plans may not sound sexy. But the fundamental thing about them is that these solutions will allow your business to be protected over time.
Resources and Links
This is Dean Soto, go check out FreedomInFiveMinutes.com and ProSulum.com if you want a Virtual Systems Architect that will help you during times just like these to keep your business moving forward. Go check them out.
Until then, I will see you in the next Freedom In Five Minutes Podcast episode.