How do you spot a good business owner when the lights go out? It’s easy. In the darkness of a local shopping centre, you may find the lights on at a small pizza takeaway and restaurant with the sound of a diesel or petrol generator chugging away furiously.
Small business owners shouldn’t be lulled into doing nothing now that blackouts are less frequent. With a crisis in electrical supply, small business owners have to do their own thing to survive. But how many have taken this step to ensure the survival of their business?
The thing is that restaurant and its takeaway section was doing better business than before because of the blackouts. More customers were eating out because there was no electricity to cook at home. They may not have gas or a generator themselves and were instead buying take out food.
Some small business owners thought they would get something done to protect their businesses by complaining in the media. It didn’t get them anywhere. Other business people, seeking cheap publicity, phoned radio stations with fancy schemes for acquiring generators free through a tax rebate from the revenue services. They are still waiting for the revenue services react, if at all.
The smart business owner stares reality in the face and decides what he or she is going to do about it. It’s no use complaining even on public platforms. They come up with their own solutions such as buying generators and perhaps even converting the cooking ovens to gas. These are the small business owners who do their calculations and realise that unless they do something they are going to lose valuable revenue. No amount of deleting on public platforms is going to recover the lost turnovers. Inaction is the enemy of a small business owner.
The other day I was talking to a seasoned business person who has had 50 years experience in business. He said it’s important to change with the times. How often do we have nostalgia for the past? But the past is gone and only a distant memory. We cannot go backwards; we can only go forwards.
A wise person once said we should rather have nostalgia for the present, the now. By living in the now, we tackle challenges and problems as they arise. We use our creative solution finding mechanism and make a plan. It might not be the optimum plan – who says burning up diesel or petrol is a cost-efficient solution to electrical power? It isn’t. But when you are faced as a small business owner with a choice of going out of business or continuing to do business, it makes sense to act.
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