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Is it Time to Give Up?!

March 12, 2018

In October, we closed our bricks and mortar retail stores. We consciously gave up. Do I feel bad? Not really. Well, maybe a little.

We certainly had concern for our staff and made sure they were taken care of. The business decision however was the right decision for several reasons. How do I know? To make the decision, we asked ourselves a few critical questions.

  1. Do we offer a product that people are willing to visit us specifically for?
  2. Do we have a group of in-store raving fans?
  3. Are we still as passionate about the business as we were when we started?
  4. Are we making incremental progress?
  5. Are we willing to fight on?
  6. Are we throwing good money after bad?
  7. What opportunities are we missing in our other business segments by focusing efforts here?

When we reviewed and discussed the answers to these questions it was clear that we needed to close the stores. In order to focus our resources and continue to grow the office coffee service, distribution and e-commerce product lines we needed to give up on the part of the business that simply wasn't producing any longer.

The business stories I read and hear tend to focus on success; the climb from nothing to huge sales. In reality, the rise of a small business does not happen in a straight line. There are wins and there are failures, ups and downs and it's important that we share all these experiences.

These days, I meet a lot of individuals that are venturing into entrepreneurship - some have left a flourishing corporate career, some move straight into start-ups. I love seeing their excitement and learning about their big vision for the future. I don't want to curb any ounce of their enthusiasm, and yet I want to warn them about the rocky road ahead.

As I coach my clients, I tell them (and I 100% believe) that everything is possible. I believe that their Big Hairy Audacious Goals are absolutely within reach. We work diligently and passionately on getting them there. I also help them weather the storm - the ups and downs - because there are highs and lows and it's not the presence of these that characterizes success. The win is in the long game. not the peaks and valleys along the way.

And so, while it was clear that we had to close the retail stores, it wasn't easy. With our focus on the long game and the wins already under our belt, we forged ahead knowing that sometimes giving up is simply the right answer.

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