Solomon Bruce Consulting Blog

Saturday, September 27, 2014

The Day Care Facility Closed Today--Where Does My Kid Go NOW?!

     In a newspaper today was an article of a day care facility abruptly closing-- with no notice to the staff or clients!  How could  this happen?  How come nobody knew?

      According to the newspaper article, the facility, built in 2011 for almost 400 children did a great business initially, however, never appeared to "cash flow" adequately and sufficiently for continued growth and operation.  Sadly, staff as well as customers did not know anything until they reported for work and had customers ready to drop off children for care when they read the sign in the door notifying everyone of the immediate closure.

        This is a sad state-- not only for the business owner, but for the employees and the customers who relied on safe, reliable and stimulating child care.  However, how did the owner not see this coming?

          A business plan, a strategic plan and a careful review of the operating budget is necessary to maintain business viability.  Cash flow analysis is one of the most important parts of business operations-- does the business have money to continue operations?  This is something that must be carefully monitored all the time.  If indeed, adequate funding is unavailable, then immediate changes should be made to operate within the funding constraints that the business experiences.  One way in which to insure that this does not happen is to begin very conservatively, and then increase operations as additional funding is made available. 

          Business  consultants provide a vital role in helping business owners manage a business.  Having a "fresh set of eyes" review operating budgets often times finds errors or other challenges that should be resolved for future operations.  If a business owner thinks that he/she has a challenge, it is always better to have a consultant review the problem than let it fester until it is so far gone that resolution is impossible.  In this case, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Friday, September 26, 2014

The Owner is in the Store

     This past week, we had client meeting in Atlanta.  After the client meetings concluded, we spent a couple of nights at Reynolds Plantation, a golfing community about 100 miles East of Atlanta.

      We checked in, met the client and went to dinner at a small, local restaurant downtown.  Nothing fancy, just a simple meal in East Central Georgia.  As we were eating, a lady came around asking how everything was.  We told her fine!  One of the members in our party asked if she was the owner.  She said that she was!  What she told us next was amazing to all of us at the table!

        She said that she had been in the restaurant business 30 years-- and she was 50 years old.  She said that her daughter was her bartender and that she paid her staff real well.  Well, the service and the food were real good, so that seemed to track.  As the owner, she told us she paid the cooking staff well, the waiters got the $2.14/hour plus tips, however, her best servers, she only had 5, made upwards of $1000 per week waiting table!

          As we visited over dessert, she said that she had Master's and PhD level employees who "just could not leave" because working in food service and going to school was the only thing that they knew!  She said that she "fired" some of them to get out and find a real job-- after all, they had gone to school, learned some material and were now ready to use what they learned!

           Change is the factor here that caused her to "fire" some of her best employees!  The owner said that change is dynamic, fast paced and different all the time.  Her logic was that change makes each of us a better person.  We agreed!

            What have you done that had changed your life?  What changes have you made that have improved your life, your career or your business?  Tell us, we are interested!