After a recent road trip checking out cafés along the way I had come up with an analogy about how we handle problems in business. I own a Volkswagen Kombi Van – the environmentally friendly type, which puts me seated a little higher than your normal car so I can often see road blockages ahead and go around them
Whilst on this trip I got stuck behind a truck I couldn’t see the road ahead, the twists, and turns and the truck was just one big block. I felt a little trapped behind it.
So it goes with the journey of business. Often you can’t see the road ahead for the obstacle in front of you in that moment. For me it was trouble with staff members, an unexpected bill, or machinery breaking down.
Often I felt like Mad Max driving a big rig with crazed apocalyptic bikies climbing on like monkeys over a bag of bananas. Other times business was so slow it was like driving Miss Daisy.
As I was driving behind the truck I slowed a little and gave it some space and the obstacle (the truck) didn’t seem so big anymore the, road opened up and I could see around the corner.
It’s really important that you take a step back and assess any perceived problems and obstacles. Hospitality businesses are a here and now, must have now, make it now, serve it now and we often get caught up in the now, now, now. Something happens and we have to solve it as as possible instead of as soon as practicable leading to unnecessary stress.
I love hospitality because you have to think fast, on your feet however it can lead to excessive pressure. In these moments take a breath, step back for a moment and give yourself that space to see the road ahead. Assess the right path rather than react. Of course this doesn’t mean don’t do anything at all.
One last point, make time for a proper break, a week or two off to regenerate, the world won’t crumble without you being there. As a business owner I hear you say ‘how can I do that’ I can’t leave my business for 5 minutes let alone two weeks. If you’re a café owner on the edge visit www.thecafeguy.com.au the way is clearly sign posted. Trucks are simply big cars.