A friend once told me that it is important to “ride the wave” of the good times to carry you through the not-so-good times. It sounded a little too new-agey for me then, but I believe now that I understand better what she meant. To me it means be fully aware and appreciative during the good times and to carry that attitude into the bad times. There is always plenty for which to be appreciative even in what we think of as the bad times; the positive energy that comes from an appreciative attitude is a lot more motivating than what comes from focusing on the bad.
The “ride the wave” perspective carries over into the smaller parts of life as well. After my last post (which was also my first) I received a comment that the post didn’t adequately convey my excitement about starting my new business, F. Oliver’s. I thought about that a lot, reread the post, and agreed. Am I excited about starting the business? YES, YES YES! It is one of the most fun things that I have ever done. However, not every part of it is fun and exciting. So, I need to improve my wave riding so that the fun, exciting parts carry me through the not so fun and not so exciting aspects.
Like most everything else, the project of starting a business has phases. For me the first phase was becoming acquainted with a concept that seemed fun, fulfilling, and economically attractive. The second phase was considering and testing the concept to see if it really would work. The third phase was creating the brand, and the fourth was and is performing all the operational tasks required to bring the business to life. There are many, many tasks to be accomplished in this, the fourth phase!
I got a full dose of those tasks last week. Among other things, I filled out city permit applications, learned how to determine what size grease trap the business needs and then questioned the city code enforcer about whether we really do need a grease trap (according to him we do….), reviewed compliance with NY state requirements for our food processing permit, discussed furnace efficiency with the local heating and cooling expert and the benefit of adequate cold air returns with the landlord, learned how to paint over exterior aluminum, and determined that at this stage Pantone 377 is close enough to Pantone 382 to go ahead with printing. All necessary to get the business up and running, but not exactly my favorite parts of it.
Yesterday morning I picked up the large “coming soon” signs for the store windows, the first time to see the logo large and live. WOW! Last night, I received a proof sheet of all the product packaging artwork. DOUBLE WOW! I am thrilled to see the brand coming to life and to be back on the wave again. There are many more mundane tasks to be completed, but focusing on the emerging personality of the business energizes me tremendously.
Better yet, what’s coming to life results from the collaboration of talented, caring, and fun colleagues and friends. I am truly thankful to have the opportunity to be part of this exceptional team and to create something tangible with people that I like and admire; people who energize me.
Riding the wave alone is terrific; riding the wave with others is exponentially terrific.