March 14th, 2011
I get the opportunity to travel around the country and learn the philosophies of many small business owners. I am both excited and relieved to say that the entrepreneurial spirit and creativity of small business owners are alive and well. The small business owner, in my opinion, really is the unsung hero of our recovering economy.
These owners are often ‘thrown for a loop’ by various events or occurrences. Whether it’s the new healthcare laws, the debate at the end of last year about raising taxes, the LRRP law, the push to get jobs installed with an expiring tax credit, the weather, the volatile oil prices–you name it, the small business owner has to tackle it. And the challenges I just listed are the easy issues small business owners in our industry have to deal with on a daily basis.
I continue to be impressed with small business owners and how they handle these issues. For instance, when I went to Detroit, Mich., during the height of the recession, dealers told me, “Please stay positive in front of my salespeople. They need to believe and understand business is still happening despite what they read and watch on the news.” And then there were the small business people in the Upper Midwest and New England who told me, “Please don’t mention how bad the weather is, we need our sales people in a positive mindset to sell.”
Whether you are a small business owner or the person running a large corporation, one thing we can always count on is another crisis. We don’t necessarily need to be concerned with “what’s going to happen next”— we just need to count on the fact that, whatever is going to happen next is probably right around the corner.
It’s how we deal with and manage the next crisis— whether it’s specifically related to our business or our industry, or it is a national or world- wide issue— that determines how it affects us. Based on my experiences with many of the small business entrepreneurs around the country, I’ve realized that the companies that are most successful in their given industries are the ones that don’t let the “next big negative news story” affect their attitude or their business principles. And this applies to their own businesses as well. If there is a challenge with a job they are working on or a workers’ comp claim, the business owners who are most successful treat these types of things almost as a planned event – these ‘blips’ on their radars are practically non- events.
So the next time you see the next big crisis in your business, on the television, or in the newspaper, tear a page out of the successful small business people in the country. Treat these items as almost planned events, not as the world coming to an end. If you can consistently do this, not only will you achieve better success, you will make the people around you more successful too!