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Veronica Lehman

JPG Garden Coach & Business Partner  


The business climate is changing rapidly right now.  Navigating through unfamiliar times can be scary and confusing, but it can also be an opportunity to learn, refine and become better and stronger.  As a former founder and now CPG business coach, here are four survival strategies we are encouraging our clients to keep top-of-mind:

1. Knowledge is Power:

It may not be a fun exercise, but as a business owner you need to understand as thoroughly as possible the potential implications of the current changes on your business. Issues like:

  • Project the impact this is going to have on your business – financial, inventory, ingredients, and customer base.
  • Cash is king – Collect as much cash now and not let any cash out of the business.
  • Focus all of your expenditures on actions that will create revenue in the short time and more than that profit.
  • Be aware of supply changes for ingredients/ packaging. Have multiple supplier and manufacturing relationships if possible. Adjust inventory as necessary.
  • Forecast out various scenarios –best and worst case and in between.

2. Tap Available Resources:

You are not in this alone. Look for the resources around you that can help you weather the storm.

  • State and federal grants available to small businesses.
  • Seed and investment money available from local seed funds.
  • Connect with other small businesses/ peer groups to strategize together.
  • Utilize friends, family and your network for help.
  • Reach out to experts in your field for advice and help.

3. Adjust:

You are going to have to change the way you do business. That’s alright, you are an entrepreneur and are used to thinking creatively and outside of the box. As a small company your ability to adjust quickly is an advantage.

  • Adjust your product offering. Is there a way to service people better through different products during this time?
  • Adjust your customer focus. Where can you find the customers who are buying? Where is business increasing and can you capture that?
  • Perfect and expand your online presence. Social media channels and ecommerce are huge opportunities in this environment.
  • Implement or expand delivery services.
  • Buy in bulk. Are there discounts that you can take advantage of?

4. Relationship Building:

These are uncertain times for everyone.  Communicate honestly and openly with your customers, suppliers, employees and others in your network, and listen too.

  • Be vulnerable. People relate to what you are experiencing and are drawn to honesty.
  • Be a helper. Use your business to help others (and create positive press) through donation, creating a giving page on social media or other acts of charity.
  • For more information or questions about services the JPG Garden can offer to food startup companies please reach out to  jpgresources.com    

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