10 Lessons from the Business World That Cross Over to Survival
10 Lessons from the Business World That Cross Over to Survival by Daisy Luther for The Organic Prepper
A lot of folks make preparedness and survival way too complicated. Sometimes applying principles from another arena can work to make things a little easier.
I was writing up some essential business skills for a group of budding entrepreneurs and it occurred to me that there’s actually a great deal of crossover from one world to the other. These basics of small business ownership are also very applicable to prepping and survivalism. Really, they’re important are life lessons that apply widely.
You may have to make some sacrifices to get things off the ground.
Most folks don’t just start a new business from scratch without giving a few things up. They have to make sacrifices of both time and money to prioritize their goals.
It’s the same with building a stockpile or making a major purchase. Most of us don’t have the extra money just lying around, waiting to be spent. We have to shift our finances around and do without something we may like to buy something we may need. And it’s the same with time. You have to take some of your spare time and spend it building your business, and likewise, you may have to reallocate your time to learn important skills, to practice those skills, to go to events, and to get to know others in your “field.”
Always assess the risk/reward ratio.
Some things just aren’t worth it in business. You may want to do something because it sounds “cool” and unique, but it may not be something that will reap the financial rewards you need for the time or money you’d spend to make it happen.
The same is true in survival situations. It’s easy to come on the internet and type-holler about your “cold, dead hands” and how you’re willing to go down in a blaze of glory to fight the cops/feds/mob/horde/zombies at your door who want your guns/stuff. You need to stop and think – if you die defending the gun in your hand, your family will still lose the gun and also lose you. What was the benefit here, aside from your short-lived ego boost?
Retreat is a viable option. Live to fight another day, when you can do it on your terms. Anyway, you’ve got some more guns and stuff cached, don’t you?
Have multiple streams of income.
In the current economic climate, businesses that had more than one stream of income (or that could quickly create one) are still standing while many of those who only had one fixed way of doing things have gone belly up. Take for example, restaurants who quickly set up curbside and delivery options, versus the ones that were fancy dine-in only experiences.
It’s the same with personal streams of income. Never put all your eggs in one basket. These days your job can be gone with a presidential announcement of closures. Here’s an article with more information about personal income streams.
Be careful who you let have the keys.
In stores that I’ve worked at previously, some employees are “key-holders.” Not just anyone gets to be a key-holder. It’s a privilege a person has to earn by proving themselves to be honest, trustworthy, and hardworking. A key holder has access to everything without supervision, so you have to be certain they’re not going to steal money or merchandise.
The same thing goes for the folks you let know about your supplies. You want to be certain that anyone you trust with access is worthy of that trust. You may want to consider holding some supplies back so you don’t show your entire hand to the outsider.
Don’t depend on just one supplier.
Imagine you have a small business manufacturing doodads. To make your doodads, you must have a whatsit, that you get exclusively from Whatsit, Inc. If Whatsit Inc. can’t deliver your whatsit, then you cannot make your doodads. If you only have one supplier, if they go out of business, you go out of business.
The same thing is true with your supplies. You should have various different sources. Let’s use food as an example. Most folks only get their food from the grocery store. They might also go to the farmer’s market but that’s the extent of their diversification. But if you know how to get food from the grocery store, the farmer’s market, a local farm, your backyard garden, hunting, or foraging, it’s going to take a whole lot longer before you run out of sources for food.
Don’t expect others to treat you ethically because you treated them ethically.
In the business world, for some of us, it’s important to do business ethically. We will be honest even if it costs us extra money. We will do the honorable thing.