Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 08/31/2020
Let’s take a break from elections, protests, and disease this week and talk about business. Small business, in particular, the kind that some of you are running and the kind we all interact with daily. Small businesses create ALL the net new jobs in the US annually, because large businesses reduce employment through retirement, technology, layoffs, and so forth. It’s a vital aspect of the economy.
But hard work isn’t sufficient. You have to be innovative. The coffee shop I visit makes most of its money in the evening when it becomes a martini bar. The inside and outside tables are (socially-distanced) filled. Steve, the owner, told me that he may close up the morning coffee shop aspect because he can’t make money that way with current restrictions, but he can at night. Steve readily changes a $100 bill for you.
Meanwhile, the local Dunkin’ Donuts owner won’t take anything larger than a $20 bill because he’s afraid of counterfeits. The most counterfeited bill in the US IS the twenty. Steve wants to be of help, the Dunkin’ Donuts owner just wants to be careful, although his choice is ridiculous. He’s afraid and doesn’t trust his customers.
The guy who owns the local men’s clothing store told me to let him know whenever I wanted to come in and he’d make sure to open for me, even if it’s not during his regular hours. A local restaurant owner has such rude hostesses, that I’ve walked out twice instead of being seated, and when I told the owner he said, “It’s tough to find good help.”
Frankly, I don’t believe that, but even so, put in some tough work, otherwise you’ll find yourself immiserated, not because of any crisis, but because you’re practicing dumb-ass, stupid management. “Small business” doesn’t have to mean “small minds.”
The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It’s as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.
If you think about it, the Ten Commandments includes a lot of “shalt nots.” What we need are a lot more “shalts.”