Staying in business for many years is not easy to do. My wife and I founded our company in 2003, so we’re now 14 years doing this. We also started the company 5 months into our marriage.
At the time I was running several businesses, but I really felt the call to leave them behind and focus on this one thing. It was a massive step of faith. In fact I share our story in a new book that will be out soon.
Having a husband and wife reliant on one business – and income stream – to not only keep the business thriving, but also manage to raise 4 children (granted, one of them is only 9 weeks old) has taken a major amount of faith. If I was to be asked what is the one key thing you have done that has kept you in business – and with complete sanity – the answer is easy. It is prayer.
But on a practical level, that answer is innovation. I thought I was pretty innovative. We heavily innovated in publishing prior to the Global Financial Crisis, and then once it hit we had to start again in a digital theme if we were to survive. And doing this with quite a large payroll was a massive task that I was not sure we were going to get through.
I have always wondered though why it takes a crisis to innovate. Why aren’t we front-footed and constantly looking for new angles and avenues? If innovation is constantly on our minds, then we– whether in our work or personal lives– can continue to evolve and see opportunities in the midst of threats.
And you don’t even have to be in business to adopt this thinking. It might be a mortgage that is slowly killing you. It might be a car loan or credit card (or several of them) that need to be wrapped up. It might be a job that is not paying enough and you need to earn more money, and thus get creative in your thinking.
Proverbs 22:3 says “Wise people see trouble coming and get out of its way, but fools go straight to it and suffer for it.”
I think creativity is at the heart of our make-up. Our God had to create the entire world, along with all the intricacies of it that go with it, from scratch. Creativity is in your nature.
So grab a pad and pen, find a quiet spot, and sit down and think about your life. What could you do differently? What areas need attention? Where is there opportunity, and where are there threats? If you follow Proverbs then you can help avoid a major crisis down the track.