Longest Q1 Ever—Or So It Feels, Right?

I am very much a by-the-book kind of businessman. I plan. I project. I try to spend time with my nose to the grindstone even in weeks I’d rather dream I was independently wealthy. I stay hopeful and I have faith. But to be honest—this first quarter of 2022 has tested me. What else can happen in a world where global commerce was already standing on its ear? Well, how about an all-out military war in Europe? How about record-high inflation despite record-low unemployment? What about the great resignation? I feel like the last three months have been a bad board game. You only win by surviving an onslaught of challenging business surprises. Was this the longest Q1 ever? So it feels.

You Can Re-evaluate Your Strategy

Out of twelve months in 2022, we still have nine months left. It is plenty of time to work on business course corrections and miscellaneous adjustments. The year began with alarms of rising inflation. I’ve spent time learning about how inflation in today’s world may chart. I have sought out opinions and advice about how small to midsized businesses can/maybe should adapt. First: don’t panic at the word “inflation.” We have inflation because of the recent massive stimulus, from both fiscal policy and monetary policy. This influx of money has increased demand. Because of higher demand, many companies can increase their prices to mitigate rising production costs. Consumers have accumulated cash in their bank accounts thanks to stimulus checks and less spending. They are willing to consider absorbing certain price hikes.

Focus On Spending Visibility And Unflinching Tracking

In your company, does everyone clearly understand where money is spent and who spends it? This is called “spending visibility.” During inflation, it can be key to set up actionable visibility of spending by individual units, cost categories, processes, and business functions. It can create the most effective focus of accountability throughout the organization. This helps ensure that all decisions are made with a view to the impact on the P&L. Also, track the execution of your inflation-based adjustments with cold-hearted clarity. Involve others in the company and get inside opinions and evaluations on results. “We chose to do this and so we got that. Should we continue?”

Don’t Lose Momentum—Even If You Are Moving Ahead Only In Inches

Foreign wars and hostile nations can seem very far away from our comfortable, Midwestern way of life. But people in the business can attest to the immediacy of supply chain woes, domestic transportation issues, and staff shortage complications. I have seen encouraging creativity and cheerful perseverance in regional companies as they deal with each new conundrum. My peers in the industry also have great stories of true entrepreneurial resilience during first the pandemic, and now, threatening global upheaval. For us, what else can we do but continue to put one foot in front of the other?

Aptica can help your business maximize the benefits of technology and minimize the danger of cybercrime. We work with our clients to fulfill business goals and still meet the budget. We aspire to make your IT the most cost-effective tool you can have. We offer free assessments of your current systems and how well they are serving you. If your technology is good, we will tell you that. If you have questions about how technology can help you in these surprising times, please give Aptica a call at 260.243.5100. It always starts with a conversation.

Jason Newburg, 260.243.5100, ext 2101, is the founder and owner of Aptica LLC. This IT management and support company has been serving small to medium-sized businesses for 20 years in the region that includes Angola, South Bend, Fort Wayne, IN, Battle Creek, MI, and Toledo OH.

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