We are now into the second half of the year. No one will forget these last months. Could we say the most significant event this century? Who knows? There are eighty more years before 2100 and its a painful thought that of thousands of children born today some may not even live to see in the new century.
I listened to Ian and Becky (my daughter) talking last year he said: ‘It’s strange to think I’ll never see Alice or Tristan’s 50th birthday’ he’s 62, and there is no likelihood of him living another 43 years (Alice is seven). And when a few moments are taken to consider the time-limited future, we realise there are many ‘calendar days’ we will never experience.
Some of you will stop reading right now: the implications of the initial paragraphs are not what you wish to read on a Sunday morning. I understand your anxiety. Stay with me until the end; there is a message.
At the moment, some of the market traders are angry with the council. We are informed we’ll have to pay the rent while the market was closed. There are meetings with the managers, solicitors and the press and a Facebook page says ‘Save Our Market’. I’m asked daily ‘What is your view Liz?’ and my reply is ‘I’m here, and I’m going to look after my customers and give them the best service possible’ ‘Yes! But what are your thoughts? Want about the market?’ and my reply is`; I’m here, and I’m going to look after my customers and give them the best service possible’.
I ask Ian for his opinion ‘The council have thousands of properties all over Nottingham. If they give way to the traders, they’ll open the floodgates for all commercial council rents. If we have to pay then we’ll do so: Let’s just carry on with rebuilding our business and looking after those who we need to stay in business. We will do everything we can to promote the market and fellow traders. It is their choice whether to accept the situation or fight for a better deal. We must make the best of what is available and accept the outcome no matter how difficult.’
For businesses, the present situation is without comparison. Although, there is a certainty most are in similar situations. To my mind, the way forward is not to fight the inevitable or severe restrictions. It is to accept the position, and if we trade without much profit for a year or so that’s fine: at least we are trading. If effort in time and depleted resources are spent trying to fight a difficult battle: then the success of our business is jeopardised further. Our choice is to look after our business, clients and customers.
There is another aspect to this situation. Intu who own the Victoria shopping Centre has entered administration. This means ‘experts’ will look after the business until a solution to the debts can be found. Last week: we have numerous people email and phone asking ‘What are you going to do now Intu are going bankrupt?’ We answered ‘They are not going bankrupt they are in administration and business will continue as normal. The press wrote of shopping centre closure, rents and service charges having to be paid three months upfront and ten’s of thousands losing their jobs. All was speculation: The press love to offer doom and gloom and this breaks the will of many people. My answer to the questions is: ‘I’m here, and I’m going to look after my customers and give them the best service possible’. To my mind: showing and demonstration of strength is a way to break the ice of negative thought.
While Ian and Becky are talking about the long term future, I think about the inevitability of his words. The reality of the time scale; on the drive home I ask him about the conversation: ‘How do you feel about never seeing Alice or Tristan’s 50th birthday?’ ‘I don’t feel anything Lizbet. They’ll still remember me when they eat their 50th birthday cake.’ And those who know him will know he laughed.
Life is full of specific situations: We can fight or accept and continue to do our very best with daily commitments. Yes! There are other options: run, moan, grip and demand others take responsibility. Whatever is done over the coming months try to be future-minded.
MD LizianEvents Ltd
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