The new rule of time is money
COVID-19 is a downturn if you are not making masks are respirators.
You and me.
In the downturn, the name of the game is to move fast, not stay at home. Rule number 1 is to survive. Rule number 2 is to win at whatever you do.
I got into developing technology for clinical trials 6 years ago while doing some cyber-consulting for an Israeli medical device company. The amazing thing was that they spent 6 months cleaning data for the FDA pivotal trial.
I saw an opportunity to disinter-mediate the service business, charge a bit more and do it in 2 weeks instead of 6 months by using some software.
No one seemed to think at the time that 6 months was an obscenely long amount of time to be spending on preparing data for a statistical analysis. The CRO (contract research organization) doing the work was happier than a pig in shit since they were billing hours.
In 2014, the NASDAQ was in the middle of a 10 year rally with no end in site. The customer had plenty of money in the bank from the IPO so they didn’t care. In 6 months the company will be worth more money so I guess that they figured time is in their favor.
Now fast forward that movie to Corona time.
The freeway is empty. You have a total market reset. Your clinical trials are stopped dead in the water. If you’re selling product, your sales are way down and your customers, like you are conserving their cash. If you’re still developing your product, you need to soldier on and deliver. If you’re selling services, your options are limited.
Your first step in the beginning of March will have been to cut back as much as you can. If you have control of your cash-on-hand, you should already be on the offensive in April.
But the rules of time and money have changed.
Now the old rule of time is money is working against you. Taking more time and billing more hours is no longer a good proposition when your customers are also in Corona-time.
You have to deliver more, better quality and do it faster.
Because no one knows when the next Pandemic will strike and if the vaccine projects will go to market in time.
Not too long ago, the consensus was that growth was the single most important parameter for a company.
The single most parameter for you and your business is speed. Focus on 3 speed metrics; monitor them ruthlessly.
Cost of customer acquisition — how fast a customer’s revenue covers their cost of acquisition. In Corona-time — closing a small profitable deal fast is better than pushing the checkers around on the board trying to get a better deal. This goes for both supplier and customer. There is a cost of supplier acquisition as well.
Churn — Lower churn better. You want low churn measure your time to resolve a customer issue. See below.
Customer issue resolution time — your best investment in customer support is to get your PRT (primary response time down to 5') and resolution to under a day. This will pay off in lower churn. See above.
Simply put — the rules of growth have turned in the rules of speed