I was recently asked by Forbes to give feedback on several questions readers are asking as part of the Forbes Coach's Council.
While not all of these will be published, here are my thoughts on the most asked questions today.
Q: What's the first step you recommend business leaders take when faced with a challenge they've never experienced before? Why is this key to tackling this new issue?
A: Ground yourself first.
First and foremost, breathe. By taking a deep breath in and out, you become more present to handle challenges coming your way rather than react to circumstances. The only way a leader will be able to effectively lead is when you embody presence, being like the eye of the storm, calm in the midst of chaos.
Q: Indecision has no place in a successful business, so it's key for business leaders to hone their decision-making skills. What's one specific strategy leaders can use to enhance their decision-making skills, and why is it effective?
Answer: Check with Your 3 Inner Advisors
When faced with a decision, check with 3 inner advisors, your intuition or gut, logic, and fear. If you get a no from gut or logic, do not move forward. If you get a yes from your intuition, a yes from logic, and a loud no from fear, that means saying yes to that decision will be a hard transformation and in the right direction. That is where you'll develop your true long term trust in the unknown.
Q: What is the key to keeping your branding tone-appropriate during a crisis?
Answer: Stop selling, start servicing
First, take care of your existing customers asking them what they need now. For new customers, market research what new problems they have today. Stop selling old solutions for today's times. Be sensitive to customer's being less willing to spend but offering lower level pricing or payment plans. Then offer a ton of value for free, providing resources, truly being of service during this crisis.
Q: How would you advise business leaders to project calmness, bravery and empathy during a crisis?
Answer: Self Care is Top Priority
The only way you'll have an overflow of energy reserves to lead your calmly is if your nurture your well being first. This looks like double downing on your well-being practices such as a morning and evening rituals. Ensure the first thing you do each morning and lat thing before bed nourishes and purifies all the stress and toxins accumulated in your body like going into nature, breathing, etc.
Q: In difficult times, how might you recommend businesses get creative about finding new revenue streams to diversify their cash flow?
Answer: Ask the Market
Interview, poll, market research existing customers and clients what are their challenges and don't assume without asking. Be high touch and call them directly versus mass emailing them. For the vast majority of businesses, do NOT try selling yesterday's problems and solutions for today--it won't apply. Be open to pivoting to a new offering aligned with where you're headed post crisis.
Would love to hear from you on whether this made a difference for you! Please comment below.
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Anna S. Choi, Conscious Business Coach, empowers the next generation of global business leaders to focus their energy, create more time freedom, and find peace amid chaos. She’s igniting a Presence Movement of quadruple bottom line based companies who care about people, planet, profit, and presence.
As a broke art student with no money, connections, or experience, she built and sold her first business, InsideOut Investing, a socially responsible financial planning practice, tripling her net income and grossing six figures by age 25 but was burned out and looked for ways to grow with ease and flow. A decade later, Anna helps her clients unleash their business brilliance, by replenishing and refocusing their energy, scaling their community impact.
Learn more at www.annasunchoi.com
Anna Sun Choi