I’m going to begin this post by tooting my own horn.
On Friday I was awarded a $1000 grant/scholarship by NAWBO-OC. The money will be used to take a few courses that I feel will increase my knowledge base as far as my business is concerned. 30 women applied; five grants were awarded, ranging from $1000 to $5000.
The event was held to honor remarkable women in business, and during the event we heard three women speak. I wanted to share one woman’s story as an example of keeping your thoughts positive on the business front and plugging away even when you feel most like giving up.
The woman speaker told a story about how after 9/11 her revenue dropped 62%. Imagine taking a hit like this in the pocketbook! She had worked very hard to build up her business, starting off in a spare bedroom in her house. When this happened, like probably anyone I know, she considered shutting the doors of her company and moving on. She discussed it with her two sons, and they told her to keep going. So she did. Today, her business is thriving.
Owning a company requires an enormous amount of strength when it comes to plodding through the tough times. There are times when you will plod through and find that you are still not successful and that, yes, you do have to pack it all in because you are out of money or out of time or out of sanity.
There are other times when you need to suck it up and keep plugging away. Remember, you business will never even have a chance to thrive if you close the doors, so if there is any chance of it doing so, hang in there.
How can you tell when it is time to stay or time to go?
First, if you are out of money, you’ve borrowed all you can and you are facing bankruptcy, get out. You don’t want to try to keep holding on to a business that is running you into the ground. If you haven’t turned a profit for a very long time and you are supporting the business, but barely, through other money, it may be time to leave. And my one word of advice is try not to keep your business afloat on credit. Because if times get too tough and you do close the doors you’ll be paying back not only what you charged but hefty interest fees as well.
If you are no longer happy doing what you are doing, consider going. Honestly, the worse thing that a person can do is spend an entire lifetime in a career that they loathe. I know people like this, counting down days until their careers are done. If you have time to get out of the job and do something else, then do it. If you are just going through a rough spot, take some time away (think tropical island and margarita) and see how you feel when you get back.
If you feel you never see your family and you want to see your family, hire more help, downsize or get out. In some jobs you can outsource work or you can hire staff to take a load off so that you can have more hours in the day with your family. Perhaps you need to take on fewer accounts. You can do this and keep the doors open in certain careers, particularly service driven businesses.
Before closing the doors, try to determine if the problem(s) you are facing can be remedied. If they can and you want to continue on, try to fix these problems. If they can’t, consider alternatives.
Now, I’m off to figure out what classes I can best take with this money!
Happy Wednesday, Working Moms and Dads.