For a lot of little company proprietors like me, the previous two many years have been comprehensive of hurdles — from navigating the COVID-19 pandemic to decrease need for the goods and expert services we work so really hard to sell.
And to increase to the monetary hardship, one yr in the past my business enterprise practically dropped every little thing.
On Dec.12, 2020, the North Country-based bakery and headquarters of my pretzel company burned down in a fireplace. Martin’s Handmade Pretzels has been in my household for 4 generations, and when I woke up to see flames surrounding the setting up, I feared for what this would imply for our potential.
I am proud to say that just one yr afterwards, my pretzel enterprise is not only back again, but thriving. We carry on to market pretzels nationwide and across New York — from farmer’s marketplaces in Syracuse, Watertown, and Previous Forge to New York Town Greenmarkets. We also not too long ago reopened our new bakery — in Moira, northern Franklin County — to the community.
There are two good reasons why my compact company was able to rebound whilst many other people about me have not been as fortunate: the support of my neighborhood and my willingness to embrace progressive technological innovation.
Initial and foremost, for small enterprises like mine, a base of loyal consumers is critical. Since we do not have the methods of larger businesses, we primarily count on term of mouth and social media to appeal to new shoppers. We are also blessed to have devoted prospects who have been consuming Martin’s Handmade Pretzels for a long time and are incredibly supportive.
When my bakery burned to the floor, our customers confused us with their generosity. They chipped through a GoFundMe webpage, which helped us increase ample revenue to get back again on our ft. Some of our suppliers also generously supplied to hold off their payment phrases and donated solutions for free.
But rebuilding just after enduring unimaginable tragedy was also made simpler by the point that we had not shied away from innovation.
When I took ownership of the small business, I understood that our out-of-date technologies was keeping us again — not in the way we built our pretzels, but in our back again-conclude operations. I turned to Latitude Bookkeeping Expert services in Plattsburgh to see if there was a much better way to keep monitor of our dollars stream and other critical information like margins, price per solution, and overhead. Among other technological know-how platforms, they encouraged electronic payments system Melio, which permits little enterprises to transfer and acquire payments digitally, speedily, and quickly.
This has performed a significant part in encouraging my company bounce again. When the bakery and headquarters burned down, we also shed all of our business’s paper checks. While that may well appear like a compact reduction, we required to proceed paying our sellers each and every week and could not possibility lacking payments. The good thing is, we have been capable to deliver out all of our payments on time.
Without the need of this system, I would have had to buy new checks and write them all by hand, which would have been very time-consuming. I have minimized the time I expend on administrative function by 50 %, which has permitted me to devote more time increasing and rebuilding the organization.
A lot of little business proprietors are generally cautious of adopting new systems, fearful that they may not see a return on their financial commitment. But in my scenario, I want my relatives-owned pretzel business had started the digitization system faster, saving us both time and revenue.
During this final calendar year of immense problems, I am grateful that I experienced the resources to get my organization again on observe. I urge other little enterprise entrepreneurs to look at embracing digital technologies that will enable their small business enter the 21st century.
Josiah Martin owns and operates Martin’s Pretzels in Moira, New York.