True resilience during times of chaos

Ivan Temelkov

03/31/2020 • 5 min read

True strength, leadership, and resilience are tested the most during time of chaos and uncertainty.

So many people talk about “resilience” on the internet. All of my social media feeds across all platforms is full of people giving advice, motivation, and inspiration on anything and everything. Including stuff that’ll make you go “What the f*ck?”

The vast majority of these people who are giving advice on things have never actually faced adversity straight on. Literally. These are mostly attention whores who are literally seeking nothing more than likes and shares to their posts.

It’s not what you say you’re going to do but what you actually do, action that has the biggest merit in everything. Life or business related.

A couple of days ago I managed to upsell my largest client on doing more work for them in April. Not only that they had the need for additional help I could offer but the timing felt right. Also, taking into consideration that in one single month I was able to completely explode their social media account. Bigger organic reach, more conversations, followers, and even organic leads. It was all good in the hood right?

I sent over the revised contract and then a couple of hours later I got the signature on it. In addition I of course sent over a revised invoice that included the upsell charge and everything felt like it was coming slowly into place.

Then, suddenly I get a message from my point of contact saying, “I’m having issues with the company card.” My intuition was telling me that something was right. Especially since the past few times all invoices were satisfied successfully via that very exact business card.

So, we started to further investigate to find out what exactly was happening. After some questioning and doing some further research I was made aware of a new protocol in payment methods my company had just recently employed.

According to my client, all invoices were now to be cured via a Net 30 payment method. My instant reaction was “What the f*ck?”

I am most definitely not a fan of Net 30 payouts. You may be wondering thought what Net 30 payment is in the world of business and entrepreneurship.

Net 30 are payment terms used where payment issued 30 days after an invoice has been submitted.

I’m not a fan of Net 30 payment terms simply because as a small business owner it ties up cashflow. Making it difficult to grow your business because of the longer period of time in getting invoices paid. Although, sometimes you don’t really have a choice though.

Do you bail out on a business relationship or shove your tail between your legs and keep going?

This is a very hard call to make. Especially in the midst of this Coronavirus nightmare where cashflow is so limited that any blow can seem like it’ll make or break you. As an entrepreneur, business owner, father, and husband there’s literally a million things that were floating around my head.

I began to think about the financial impact this would have on me.

The thought of losing my biggest client also crossed my mind.

Having enough cashflow to cover my overhead, keep the lights on, put food on the table, pay my kids daycare, etc etc.

It’s extremely frustrating when the unexpected occurs and you’re forced to flex. As if you haven’t flexed already multiple times before.

After much thought about the situation I came to a realization.

Relationships are priceless. Especially the really good ones. This is one of those relationships and it’s important to find ways to retain it. It is extremely hard to find good clients who simply get you and vice versa.

So, after much deliberation I came to terms with the fact that this was nothing more than a bump in the road. I’ve been here before multiple times. I’ve lost clients, gained new ones. I’ve lost revenue then regained it again.

The fear and uncertainty of things is what usually drives people crazy. At least most entrepreneurs anyway who are seeking some level of gratification in such unfortunate situations.

True leaders. Those who have real inner strength, not afraid to leap, risk, and sacrifice are the ones who are capable of weathering any storm. I’m simply caught in a small storm that will not last forever and need to uphold a strong level of resilience to get through it.

I have no doubt in my mind that my biggest client will stick around for quite a while.

I have no doubt that the opportunities will grow especially once the Coronavirus pandemic passes.

I have no doubt that we will do many great things together in the short and long term.

One of the biggest challenges as an entrepreneur is to have the inner strength, the resilience necessary to weather the inevitable. The unexpected.

This particular experience has been yet another reminder to me that being mentally and emotionally prepared to go from 100 to 0 on daily basis is simply essential. As an entrepreneur and business owners it’s one of those inevitable things that can happen on any given day at any given time. How you react and handle such situations thought define your level of commitment not only towards your relationships but also to your goals and dreams.

How are you being resilient during these difficult and changing times?