By David Mogga
In medical science, the term resuscitate is used when reviving someone from unconsciousness or apparent death especially in emergency cases when someone’s life hangs on the balance. In business, this term is used when trying to make an idea or a business active again or more vigorous again. In a broader business sense, resuscitating a business can also imply activating or bringing back to life an otherwise dormant or collapsing business mainly through external intervention through introduction of new business ideas or revising old business models with new vigor.
Businesses just like human beings undergo paralysis, unconsciousness and even death in the case of total collapse of business operations. Therefore the need to resuscitate businesses particularly those that were in prior operation is as much a common practice as it is when human beings lose consciousness requiring such medical intervention. While in human beings such circumstances are caused by medical factors that affect the health and overall wellbeing of the individual, the health of a business can equally be looked into. Critical signs such as a decline in sales growth, poor cash flow management or increased debt levels are some of the signs of poor business health.
The paralysis and collapse of businesses globally are not automatic and neither are they abrupt, they normally take time and can at times be difficult to notice especially when the business lacks proper records and monitoring mechanisms. Without proper records, it becomes more difficult to notice the underlying signs of business collapsing leaving the owners of such businesses unaware of such symptoms prior to the untimely demise of such once-thriving enterprise.
Factors in the lead to business collapse/paralysis are normally the underlying triggers behind the symptoms that rise to the surface from time to time. Given the current difficult business and economic environment and considering the specific internal factors at play, the following factors could easily lead to business paralysis, unconsciousness and/or death of business operations:
Negative economic growth: In situations where there is negative GDP growth, many businesses are likely to experience negative growth in their turnover leading to closure of the affected business units, staff lay-offs, closure of branches/shop outlets just to mention but a few. Businesses unable to resuscitate their way out of such situations are likely to lose out and eventually go under. This factor cuts across several industries and due to the knock-on effect of business operations, several industries could be affected as well.
Change in technology: Certain industries such as drilling and exploration can easily be affected by the introduction of new technology which can make old technology obsolete hence businesses that fail to catch up with these technological changes become irrelevant and unable to keep up with competition.
Change in consumer preferences: Consumer habits are sometimes very unique and can change from time to time especially when it comes to the fashion industry forcing old models out of place;
Stiff Competition: Stiff competition are difficult to overcome especially for new entrants in any given business field making this a common factor behind start-up businesses.
Regulatory changes: Abrupt and complex regulatory requirements are likely to negatively impact business operations and could lead to business closures among affected business enterprises. Such interruptions if not well communicated beforehand could likely lead to non-compliance and eventual conflict between business and the regulators overseeing such enterprises.
Whatever the cause and whichever angle you at it from, business paralysis and collapse can eventually be turned around through putting in place the right strategy and timely implementation of such rescue plans.