It's the most wonderful time of the year...for so many people. And then there are those who have lost so much and are struggling. Without a doubt, 2020 will have more than its share of disappointments as well as stories - those about wedding cancellations, loved ones have died in hospitals with no one by their side, business shutdowns and closures of businesses that have been in families for generations. Yet there are still stories about overcoming these challenges.
At the beginning of this pandemic, I posted a paragraph on Facebook assuring our business associates as well as friends that we were in it for the long run and that we needed to make certain we would bounce back since we are so heavily hospitality driven. Last May I decided to run for State Representative because I knew that the survival of our community depended on our businesses staying open. While I was knocking doors from about early to mid September, I have had many people (friends and business acquaintances) reach out to me regarding the status of our business. It was always followed by, "If there was anything I can do, I will". My response was always the same - why would you say that and to please let local and state government know how important it was to keep businesses open and to buy local as often and much as possible as we ride out the storm. But there was something else.
As a small business owner, I ask you to choose what you say, carefully. Words matter and are more powerful than you can imagine. There are so many out there who throw out a list of businesses who have closed, or are hanging on for dear life - only to be wrong about the information they have shared. For some, that means what could have been business is now redirected somewhere else. Such was the case with our operation. There was recently an article appearing where the writer was interviewing a competing business owner. A paragraph in the article implied that transportation businesses in our area had shuttered their doors. I'm not sure if this information came from the competitor or from the writer. Regardless, it was baseless and was not fact checked because none of the three livery providers in our area have closed.
I am reminded of a childhood story where a young boy would see his baseball coach pick up an apple on his daily walk to the ball field - without paying. At the end of every week this coach would settle the bill with the produce owner for the apples he had eaten that week. But the boy didn't know this and told his friends and parents. Eventually, everyone in town suspected the coach of stealing these apples. In the end, no one wanted to play for the coach. The conclusion of the story shows the effects of the boy's loose words when he releases a pillow full of feathers on a windy day, and asks the boy to pick up each feather. Really, it is next to impossible.
Coming back to Black Label Transportation; besides several calls that have come in, I have had two drivers reach out to me to ask if this was true. Folks, words do matter and they have consequences. We, like so many others out there, have been doing our best to significantly chang business models and modifying equipment to meet demand. All small businesses are doing that.
While not the over the top crazy stream of work we had in March of 2020 and then lost within 24 hours when everything went silent, we are certainly at a level that is "doable" and climbing.
Black Label Transportation Group is and remains open to serve your executive transportation needs. Thanks to faithful clients - both old and even new - we are emerging a stronger company as America begins emerges from this pandemic.
But please, as a small business owner who shares the same challenges as so many owners our there, make sure you know your information is based on facts.