Truthfully, I am not as far along in my homework as I would like to be at this point. I have started on the book Understanding Michael Porter, by Joan Magretta. And I have listened to some of the radio ads but have not picked the five that I would like to use for my assignment. This week has been a trying week of most of us outside of our schoolwork, which makes me think of the program in a different light.
In the last week, I have had to keep my kids home from school, my wife has transitioned from in-class college to online, and I have worked long hours in preparation for the response of the pandemic. I am a soldier and the unit that I belong to is an expeditionary signal battalion. And in plain English, it is a unit that deploys when there is a need for communications beyond the normal infrastructure. Right now, we have personnel deployed to Europe and Africa, but this last week we were told to prepare to deploy to the west coast to assist with medical units assisting Americans in the hot zones.
It has been a long week, but the point I want to note is where my thoughts have been, the local businesses. I would be lying if I said I did not go into some of the big box stores to buy supplies to take care of my family during this trying time, but whenever I could I tried to buy from the smaller local stores. My wife enjoys wine, and if we are stuck indoors for two weeks there better be a few bottles laying in waiting. This allowed me to buy from local vendors selling local wines. We ordered care packages for some in the community from a local restaurant that would be delivering frozen meats to elderly shut-ins. I stocked up on my dog food from the local feed store.
I am not saying all of this to have anyone tell me I am doing something good; I am doing it because that could be any of us. Entrepreneurs are going to take a big hit when the dust settles on this virus. There might not be a big bailout to help with lost income. In times of crisis, some of the first things to go are leisure, luxury, and small businesses. Seeing the Las Vegas strip completely dissertated at 5 pm on a Saturday is hard to believe, but there is enough money in most of the casino’s accounts that this won’t break them. But the business owner that was just getting by might not recover.
What I guess I am trying to say is, if you can buy from the little guy right now it might make a difference. If you can’t, make sure you support them when you can.