The recesion is like an outgoing tide, uncovering lots of ship wrecks in its wake.
Half finished projects, cost overruns that were easily able to be hidden, and atrocious practices that were exceptionally useful when it was all about getting product out the gate - but they are suddenly a liability now that we are all focused inwards on cost control and shrinking profit margins.
It's easy to panic. Heck it is a natural human reaction to panic and blame anyone near you who isn't panicking! At the very least it is hard to k now exactly where to start.
It doesn't seem overwhelming - it IS overwhelming. Too many urgent issues, rising levels of important issues, and nowhere near enough money, time or expertise to deal with all of them.
So where to start? First...stop the bleeding.
What hurts most? Where is the pain the most acute? What is distracting us from taking care of the really important issues?
It could be staff turnover, or chronic failures of a part of the plant, cost overruns in standard maintenance practices, or a severely bloated inventory. In fact, it could be anything from asset eprformance, to staff numbers through to business processes and controls.
Pick on, the one that really stands out, the one that will draw attention once it is under control, and deal with it comprehensively.
Once the urgent issues have been bought u nder control then you are free of distractions to deal with the important issues. (Like whole-of-life asset management, zero based budgeting and so on)
Once the urgent issues are tamed our bosses start putting pressure on us about how to make the business better and stronger, rather than merely how to survive.
It makes life a lot easier...