Business Owners Give Thanks -- For What? - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

03:48 PM

Business Owners Give Thanks -- For What?

A common Thanksgiving tradition is sharing what we are thankful for this year. Given the financial crisis, this is a more daunting challenge than in the past.

A common Thanksgiving tradition is sharing what we are thankful for this year. Given the financial crisis, this is a more daunting challenge than in the past.Gathered around tables lacking the bounty of previous years and absent the out-of-town relatives that would usually attend (travel costs), it's easy to imagine business owners, grinding their teeth and sarcastically growling out something like the following (or maybe just thinking it):

"I'm thankful that our sales are down 40%." "I'm thankful that I fired 25 people." "I'm thankful that I closed two stores in the last 60 days." "I'm thankful that 10 bill collectors have my cell phone on speed dial." "I'm thankful that my investments are down 50%." "I'm thankful that my employee health insurance premiums jumped 65%." "Pass the mashed potatoes!"

Here's the part where I point that all isn't lost, that there is hope, that there's opportunity, that good times are just around the corner, that there is something to give thanks for. But let's face facts, that's a hard sell.

Or so I thought. One bMighty reader disabused me of the notion that any business owner would opine their tough luck at the dinner table, pointing out that:

  • Business owners have become successful by beating the odds and solving problems
  • That small business owners are America's leading job creators (78% of all new jobs in the US over the past 20 years.)
  • Today's economics challenges are simply problems to be solved
  • A positive attitude is a requirement for success

That can do attitude speaks to an opportunity presented by the current financial woes -- an opportunity to lead. No one recalls leaders who preside over flush times. The leaders who make history are at the helm for the spectacular flameouts -- Kenneth Lay, Edward John Smith -- for the comebacks against all odds -- Lee Iacocca, Doug Flutie -- and for grabbing opportunities no one else saw -- Steve Jobs, James Dyson.

Bad times create openings for new ideas and new directions. This is not a time to wait and see or business as usual. It's a time to put that positive outlook into action and solve problems -- chart a new direction, rethink the way your business operates, and question assumptions. The results may save your business during these trying times and perhaps even set you on a new path of possibility.

Be thankful? Yes, indeed. Give thanks for opportunity and go grab it.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
IT Careers: 12 Job Skills in Demand for 2020
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  10/1/2019
Enterprise Guide to Multi-Cloud Adoption
Cathleen Gagne, Managing Editor, InformationWeek,  9/27/2019
5 Ways CIOs Can Better Compete to Recruit Top Tech Talent
Guest Commentary, Guest Commentary,  10/2/2019
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
Data Science and AI in the Fast Lane
This IT Trend Report will help you gain insight into how quickly and dramatically data science is influencing how enterprises are managed and where they will derive business success. Read the report today!
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll