As the country attempts to turn back from the apparent crash course of excessiveness it has been on, for the past decade, we will eventually find ourselves resorting back to “the simple life”.
It’s ironic that in 1990 at the height of that decades “Bush” recession Kranston and I had just purchased a antiquated grocery store in
What kind of fool convinces his girlfriend to leave a high paying job so she can stack groceries, you ask? One without foresight…
However, thanks to the crashing economic forecast of the early 90’s, everything turned out fine thanks to Time Magazine. It was within those pages in April, 1991 that the magazine featured Kranston, along with four other entrepreneurs, in a story headlined, “The Simple Life”.
The slant of the story covered how often we need less fast paced schedules, less material possessions, and less financial gains to be happy. Once the story ran we received inquiries from grocery store owners across the country asking if we were interested in buying another grocery store. And, the fifteenth call, from Rob Dick, who owned the Cottagewood Store in
When we made the move from Crocus Hill to Cottagewood we didn’t have any huge bank account, we didn’t have any great ideas on how to make the next famous tapenade, coulis, or ketchup. We each possessed a certain drive, passion and imagination. And we had the vision to continually be looking for an opportunity. That hasn’t changed.
The recent change is that the boom years of the past decade have once again stalled as they have three times over the past 30 years. The fun for many has fizzled. The security blanket which many of us thought was hidden in our home equity, or our 401k portfolios, or our easy come catering parties at Christmas have all but dried up. It’s now time for imagination, and ingenuity. Its time to think of how we can maximize cash flow and conserve product and energy and wages in order to get through the next few months. I never experienced such a difficult time as when I was attempting to grow a business during a recession. It was difficult. It took a lot of work, a lot of ingenuity, a substantial amount of creativity and many, many, sleepless nights.
In the end, Kranston and I got through it. We learned more than we ever could have if the times were not as tough. We learned how to run a better operation, a tighter operation. We paid attention to food costs, to employee wages, rent, utilities and vendor pricing. We developed a process for turning a profit. And, through it all built a better business.
I am sure if it weren’t for the recession and the difficult times, we never would have made it. It’s ironic how a recession can be its own economic stimulus package.