This year, Australian businesses have faced multiple disruptions, from extreme weather events to a global pandemic. These disruptions have brought a host of challenges to the front and centre of business decision-making. However, one of the most important lessons businesses can take from this experience is that proactive and agile businesses have a greater chance of not just survival, but future and ongoing success.

Agility is crucial for businesses of all sizes, however for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), rapidly adapting to market changes can provide a competitive advantage. Especially in a volatile market with an uncertain future, businesses that can rapidly scale or pivot to new industries will be the most successful.

The benefits of a proactive business

Planning proactively means that your business is always ready for the future. Although we may not know what disruption is waiting, proactive planning means your business will be able to transition smoothly or adapt faster to whatever challenges arise.

The benefits of a being a proactive business include:

  • preparedness and flexibility for future challenges
  • more market options and a wider range of opportunities
  • improved business operations and performance
  • cost and resource savings
  • better internal business cohesiveness.

How to become a proactive business

Changing your organisational model to a more proactive structure can let you anticipate market changes and respond ahead of time. There are three important steps you can take to become proactive. These are:

  1. Automate elements of the business operation

Automation is an essential element for SMBs to build a proactive organisational model. New technology is one of the biggest industry disruptors; however, it also provides one of the biggest advantages. Automating manual, repetitive tasks can free up employee time to focus on other tasks. This can help drive a culture of innovation, letting employees work deeply and creatively without interruptions during the day.

  1. Use data analytics for business insights

By implementing data analytics software into your business, you can gain insights about performance, productivity and market trends. By using your own business data to underpin decisions, you can align strategic plans with market trends specific to your customers, services and business.

Business analytics can also help you measure the success of services, products and other offers, which can highlight areas that are performing well or need improvement.

  1. Provide continuous employee training

Employees are integral to the success of your business. Training is an important tool for ensuring the company is aligned with proactive thinking, and that employees understand the changes being made to the business, how to use the new technology and how this will benefit the business.

  1. Monitoring the market and planning ahead

Planning for the business’s future will let you set goals and deadlines based on industry research and your own analytics. Allowing for contingencies in the plan means that, when disruptions do occur, your business is prepared to pivot to meet the challenges.

Businesses can no longer afford to be reactive. Being proactive and implementing technology, particularly automation, will be the key to navigating future disruptions and emerging successfully.

To learn more about how automation can make your business proactive, download our checklist or contact Planning Systems Group today.