What can you Control if you’re in a Cyclical Business?

up and down arrows on boxes

There are some sectors that are more cyclical than others, like the hospitality sector which has fairly large swings in demand. But there are numerous industries, micro industries, SMME’s and solo proprietors who are affected by this phenomenon.


As the owner or CEO of a Hotel Chain, a stationary supplier (back-to-school), an air conditioner supplier, a poultry producer, a swimming coach or a Christmas Decoration installer, you are affected by wide ranges in demand.


So how do you ensure you are, firstly, maximising sales and market opportunity when the cycle is in your favour?  and secondly, building your buffer for the quieter cycle?


Being prepared and having a plan to deal with the trend is as important as using it to help you refine your business.


What I have noticed by working with businesses across all the sectors listed above is during peak demand, the first season we worked together, it was just chaotic. The systems are not in place and the structure isn’t there to convert the “Make hay” period into a highly profitable time in the business. Instead it’s an under resourced team cutting corners and burning the candle at both ends to try and deliver to their customers. This, more times than not, leads to frustrated customers receiving below par service/product from exasperated and exhausted suppliers, with dire consequences like burn-out and resignations within business teams and poor customer retention.


For example, One company I worked with would employ temporary staff to help them meet the increased demand, the hiring process was flawed and the onboarding of the new hires almost absent.


During the quieter time you should ask yourself the following questions:


  • Are you evaluating your processes and systems and deciding what to change, discard or improve?
  • What worked & what didn’t?
  • Could you take each department through the same evaluation to give you a score that will direct you where your attention is mostly urgently needed?
  • Could you ask your staff, your key clients and suppliers to complete a survey to assist you with this?
  • How are you ensuring your next busy cycle is better? That you deliver on your budgets, margins and client expectations.


This is the work your coach will help you with and how we help businesses break through barriers to the next level.


Luke Dillon, ActionCOACH Business Coach