The economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic has been one of the factors leading to an Australian recession, and each day business owners have to adapt to an ever-changing local and global landscape.
Recently, CurrencyFair co-founder Brett Meyers and current CEO Paul Byrne joined Gary Fox on the Entrepreneur Experiment podcast to share their experience and advice with SMEs facing challenges.
CurrencyFair has been in business for a decade, and was founded in the midst of difficult economic conditions.
“When Brett started the company during the recession in 2009, it was providing great value for people in order to help them save money, that’s what the company still does today. We’re very focused on helping small businesses who are still trying to make payments and import goods from abroad,” says Byrne.
When a downturn occurs, Meyers believes that “worst-case scenario” analysis is one of the most important things a business can do, and also advises that it’s better to “overreact rather than underreact.”
“Assume it will be worse than it will probably be because it’s easier to pull back from taking extra action and wind it back if it’s no longer necessary than it is to take a bit of action, and then take more action, and more action,” he says.
Byrne expands on this point by highlighting that many businesses may also have to change their business models and target markets.
“It’s trying to find green-shoots of opportunity for every business and I think that by cutting hard early you buy more time to find that rather than constantly chasing the next cost cut,” Byrne says.
“While you might be an optimist, as a business leader and a founder of the company you need to be a pessimist in a ‘shock’ and give yourself more time to react to chase new business opportunities or use the opportunity to refocus on what kind of business you actually want to be in a year’s time and work into that plan. That’s what we’re doing.”