A busy professional has this question regarding his professional career.

As a manager, how can you save your company from going bankrupt?

I want to know how you would manage a company that is going to fail. Should I give up or should I continue? 

Firstly, I would like to commend you on your desire to assist with the success of the company.  Too many of us see our positions as merely marking the work day time.  We strive to stay in our role and not venture into other areas that can assist in the success of the company (and therefore the success of the whole).

Unfortunately, without knowing your current position/department or relationship with the owners, I can only speak in generalities.  For instance – if you are the manager and NOT the owner, your influence over the company’s success is directly proportionate to your influence over the owners.

Also, sales drive the business bus.  If you are in a direct position to assist with sales, you have a better opportunity to affect revenue.

How much influence do you have

Therefore, the first step is to assess how much influence do you have with the executive branch.

  • If you are manager, are you a lower level manager or do you have direct and regular access to the executive brand?
  • Have the executive brand regularly taken your advice and counsel previously? If they haven’t in the past, they are unlikely to do so in crises.
  • Are you in a position to bring direct change in revenue? Can you bring in immediate sales leads, convert leads into sales quickly, influence current clients to successfully refer your company’s services to others, and not only retain current clients but continually up-sale them to higher priced services.

How much effort do you want to put in

If you have that much insecurity in the success or failure of the venture, do you really want to be the one turning off the lights?  First and foremost, you need to decide what is best for you.

Regardless whether you stay at this company or move on, your goal should continually be to search out what it best for you.

You and your talent are valuable.  So, decide what you want from your effort.

For example:

  • Are you willing to invest money into this company and become an executive partner to save the company?
  • Are you willing to reach out to your family, friends, and business network to locate venture capital, investors or sponsors to save this company? If you decide to do this, make sure the company is worthy of your network and reputation.
  • Are you willing to put your reputation on the line for the success of this company?
  • Are you willing to put in 60-80 hours to make someone else’s company successful?

Should you move on

Decide what you are getting out of this company (both professionally and personally).  If what you are getting out of the company is equal (or better) than what you are putting in – we should chat regarding your specific situation.  With a few more details about the company and your background, I would be able to give additional recommendations specific to your situation.

If it is less, then we should chat regarding your next steps.

It’s a business

At the end of the day, the company will make business decisions.  Many employees will stay loyal to their employers longer than the company can support that loyalty.  Therefore, make the decisions that are best for you and your career.

Hope this helps a little.

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